Prince Andrew said in a new interview that it was wrong for him to have stayed at the Manhattan townhouse of Jeffrey Epstein after the financier had served time for soliciting a minor for prostitution.
The Duke of York was confronted about the 2010 visit to Mr. Epstein’s Upper East Side mansion during an interview with the BBC.
It followed the August publication of photos and video from Prince Andrew’s stay with Mr. Epstein, a convicted pedophile at the time, by The Daily Mail.
“That’s the bit that, as it were, I kick myself for on a daily basis because it was not something that was becoming of a member of the royal family,” Prince Andrew, 59, said. “And we try and uphold the highest standards and practices and I let the side down, as simple as that.”
When asked by Emily Maitlis why he stayed in the house of a convicted sex offender in a pre-recorded interview, understood to have been the result of six months of negotiations with the royal household, Andrew described it as a “convenient place to stay.”
He said: “I’ve gone through this in my mind so many times but at the end of the day with the benefit of all the hindsight that one can have it was definitely the wrong thing to do but at the time I felt it was the honorable and right thing to do.”
“I admit fully my judgment was probably colored by my tendency to be too honorable but that’s just the way it is.”
Prince Andrew said he had “no recollection” of ever meeting Virginia Giuffre, the woman who claims to have been coerced into having sex with the royal by Epstein.
He said he regretted remaining friends with the financier after he was found guilty of sexual offenses: “I stayed with him and that’s … that’s … that’s the bit that … that … that, as it were, I kick myself for on a daily basis because it was not something that was becoming of a member of the royal family, and we try and uphold the highest standards and practices and I let the side down, simple as that.”
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