The US has put pressure on Britain in a bid to force Prince Andrew to co-operate with investigators over s.e.x abuse claims, it has been reported.
Investigators probing the case of Ghislaine Maxwell and other associates of dead billionaire paedophile Jeffrey Epstein are said to want to speak to the Duke of York about his friendship with the paedophile financier.
Officials from President Biden’s government reaffirmed the US and UK’s ‘close relationship’ when it comes to offering ‘legal assistance’ in criminal matters amid growing frustration over Prince Andrew’s refusal to engage with investigators
A US government official told the Sun: ‘The US and the UK have a close, productive and resilient law enforcement and mutual legal assistance relationship.
‘We remain in close contact on many active cases on a daily basis and will continue to seek assistance in criminal matters as we provide similar assistance in return.’
Prosecutors last year sent the British government a formal request, known as a mutual legal assistance treaty (MLAT) -submission, asking for access to the prince so they could talk to him.
The MLAT is a procedure used in criminal investigations to gather material from foreign countries which cannot readily be obtained on a cooperative basis but it is understood the Duke of York has yet to co-operate.
Andrew remains a person of interest to prosecutors in the office of the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York – but they do not expect to be able to interview him in the foreseeable future, if ever, it has been reported.
As a person of interest, the Queen’s son is viewed at least as a potential witness – and questioning him would form part of the investigation into possible co-conspirators.
Prosecutors earlier this month said Andrew, 61, had ‘sought to falsely portray himself to the public as eager and willing to cooperate’ but had given no interview to federal authorities and had repeatedly declined requests to talk with investigators.
It comes as Virginia Giuffre, who has said she was abused by Epstein, filed a civil complaint against Andrew in Manhattan federal court.
Ms Giuffre, who used to be known as Virginia Roberts, alleges Epstein forced her to have unwanted s3xual intercourse with Andrew at the London home of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell – Epstein’s alleged Madame.