New York: Late financier Jeffrey Epstein’s settlement agreement with Virginia Giuffre was made public on Monday as part of Giuffre’s civil lawsuit accusing Britain’s Prince Andrew of sexual abuse.
The court documents reveal that Epstein settled a 2009 lawsuit with Giuffre for $500,000. Andrew’s lawyers are using Giuffre’s Epstein settlement to argue that the case against the senior royal should be dismissed on the grounds that the Epstein agreement barred Giuffre from taking future legal action against Epstein associates covered by the agreement.
The settlement provided a release for “any other person or entity who could have been included as a potential defendant” against various claims by Giuffre.
US District Judge Lewis Kaplan will now have to decide whether that clause blocks Giuffre’s lawsuit against Andrew.
Giuffre’s lawsuit accuses Andrew of forcing her to have sex more than two decades ago when she was under 18. The lawsuit says the assaults took place at the London home of Epstein’s former and recently convicted sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell, as well as at two of Epstein’s homes.
Giuffre, 38, is seeking unspecified damages in a civil lawsuit filed in Manhattan federal court.
Andrew, 61, has denied Giuffre’s assertions and has moved to dismiss the lawsuit, arguing Giuffre is seeking a “payday” from her accusations against Epstein and his associates. The prince has not been accused of criminal wrongdoing.
Andrew argues the 2009 confidential agreement Giuffre reached with Epstein – whom she has accused of trafficking her for sex when she was a teenager – shields him from liability.
Andrew’s lawyer says the deal covers “royalty ” and that Epstein intended for it to cover anyone Giuffre might sue.