What awaits Prince Andrew, the subject of a sexual assault complaint?

NEW YORK, USA.- What awaits Prince Andrew after the rejection by a United States court of his appeal against an American lawsuit accusing him of sexual assault committed in 2001, when he was 17?

For lawyers interviewed by AFP, if Queen Elizabeth II’s second son does not reach a financial agreement with the plaintiffs, Virginia Giuffre, 28, will be tried in civil matters with little risk of criminal proceedings.

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Can you appeal?

Yes. Following the decision published Wednesday by Manhattan federal court judge Lewis Kaplan, the British prince’s lawyers may appeal. They could even go to the US Supreme Court in theory, but experts doubt that the process will go that far.

What civil process?

If all of Andrés’ appeals against Giuffre’s complaint fail, civil proceedings could take place “between September and December” this year, Judge Kaplan said in the fall of 2021.

In that case, the Duke of York, who “unequivocally” denies the allegations, must testify under oath to a law firm, possibly in England, and answer questions from the plaintiff’s American counsel.

“It’s a less formal table than a court, but it can be very long, late hours and quite aggressive,” a former prosecutor, Bennett Gershman, told AFP.

The prince’s response will then be presented as evidence to a civil court jury tasked with considering financial compensation for the plaintiffs.

“If he doesn’t show up, he will be tried in absentia and the trial will be unfavorable,” New York attorney Richard Signorelli warned.

– Can Andrés be criminally prosecuted?
The lawsuit that Giuffre filed in New York in August 2021 for “sexual assault” to be committed in 2001 in London, New York and the US Virgin Islands – the residence of sexual predators Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell, the prince’s friend – could not be turned into a prosecution. criminal offenses for sexual crimes.

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But there’s nothing to prevent US prosecutors from starting criminal prosecutions against Andrés in the future if they believe he can commit a crime.

However, for former prosecutor Roger Canaff, the eventual criminal prosecution for “sexual assault” would have no “legal basis” for US federal justice, and would be established in New York state.

Moreover, even if the British royal prince does not have diplomatic immunity according to the press, American legal experts predict it will be very difficult to extradite him to the United States for trial.

Matt Thompson

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