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Prince Andrew’s Accuser Takes Her Case to the BBC


LONDON — Virginia Roberts Giuffre recalled a whirlwind trip to London with her employer, the financier Jeffrey Epstein, when she was 17. It began at a townhouse where Prince Andrew was talking about his ex-wife, the Duchess of York. It moved on to a club, where she said she and the prince danced, and he sweated profusely. And it ended when, she said, she was ordered to have sex with him.

“It was disgusting,” Ms. Giuffre said in an interview broadcast Monday by the BBC. “I sat there in bed and felt horrified and ashamed.”

“I had just been abused by a member of the royal family,” she continued. “These powerful people were my chains.”

Ms. Giuffre’s account of the trip in 2001, and of two other incidents when she said she had sex with Prince Andrew at Mr. Epstein’s homes in New York and in the Caribbean, was the first time she described her story for a British audience.

Ms. Giuffre acknowledged that the passage of time may have fogged her memory about the dates or places of certain events. But she said she had a vivid memory of dancing with Prince Andrew. “He is the most hideous dancer I’ve ever seen in my life,” she said. “His sweat was like, ‘it’s raining everywhere.’”

The reaction to Prince Andrew’s remarks was swift and overwhelmingly negative. Several charities with which he was associated distanced himself from him, he was urged to testify under oath to the F.B.I. and his brother, Prince Charles, urged the queen to strip him of his public duties, which she did.

For the royal family, it was the worst public relations debacle since the aftermath of the death of Princess Diana in a car crash — stirring questions about the aging queen’s control over her family and drawing calls from the British news media for Prince Charles to take a more central role at Buckingham Palace.

For Ms. Giuffre, who described a history of abuse dating back to her childhood, the alleged encounters with Prince Andrew left her, she said, even more sickened than those with Mr. Epstein, whom she described as “having a sickness that could not be cured,” or with his girlfriend, Ghislaine Maxwell, who is accused of procuring teenage girls for him, and who Ms. Giuffre described as vicious.

“This is not some sordid sex story; this a story of being trafficked,” she said. “This is a story of your guys’ royalty.”



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