what's done in the dark...
The 2009 settlement between Jeffrey Epstein and Virginia Roberts Giuffre was unsealed Monday as part of Giuffre's lawsuit against Prince Andrew, CNN reports.
The settlement stipulated that Giuffre, who accused Epstein of trafficking her and forcing her to have sex with Prince Andrew and others while she was still a minor, agreed to drop her case against Epstein and any other "potential defendant[s]" in exchange for $500,000.
A Florida court convicted Epstein of sex crimes in 2008, and he was awaiting trial on federal sex trafficking charges when he died in prison in 2019.
On Dec. 29, Epstein's longtime associate Ghislaine Maxwell was found guilty of procuring underage girls for Epstein to sexually abuse.
Giuffre's attorney David Boies said contents of the settlement are "irrelevant" to his client's claim and expressed confidence that her lawsuit would be allowed to proceed. "The release does not mention Prince Andrew. He did not even know about it," he said.
"He could not have been a 'potential defendant' in the settled case against Jeffrey Epstein both because he was not subject to jurisdiction in Florida and because the Florida case involved federal claims to which he was not a part. The actual parties to the release have made clear that Prince Andrew was not covered by it."
Andrew's lawyers had no comment.
The prince, who stepped away from royal duties after a widely panned 2019 interview addressing the allegations, has denied any wrongdoing. In October 2021, London police dropped their criminal probe into the matter.
Andrew has also attempted to poke holes in Giuffre's story. She claims that, when they first met, he was sweating profusely in a nightclub. The prince says this is impossible because he "didn't sweat at the time" due to a "peculiar medical condition" which apparently no longer afflicts him.
If Giuffre's case is not dismissed and the parties fail to reach a settlement, Andrew could face trial in late 2022.