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A former Buckingham Palace royal protection officer says he suspected Ghislaine Maxwell and Prince Andrew had an 'intimate relationship,' according to a new documentary

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  • A former Buckingham Palace official says Ghislaine Maxwell would visit multiple times a day.

  • Queen Elizabeth II stripped Prince Andrew of his royal patronages and military titles on Friday.

  • The move forces Andrew to defend himself against a sexual-assault lawsuit as a private citizen.

A former royal protection officer said in his first TV interview that the Buckingham Palace staff suspected Prince Andrew and Ghislaine Maxwell had an "intimate relationship."

"From the way she was allowed to enter and exit the palace, at will, we realized … suspected, that she may have had an intimate relationship with Prince Andrew," the former officer, Paul Page, said in a new ITV documentary, "Ghislaine, Prince Andrew and the Paedophile." "A colleague of mine remembered her coming in four times in one day from the morning till the evening — she kept coming in and out, in and out."

The Duke of York's legal tensions have mounted following the December conviction of Maxwell, a British socialite who was found guilty of five of six sex-trafficking charges brought against her.

On Friday, Queen Elizabeth II held a personal meeting with her son to notify him that he would be stripped of his royal patronages and military titles as a result of the sexual-assault lawsuit brought against him by the Jeffrey Epstein accuser Virginia Giuffre, forcing him to defend himself as a private citizen.

The palace's decision came one day after a federal judge in New York denied an attempt by Prince Andrew to dismiss the lawsuit. Since 2015, Giuffre has alleged that Epstein forced her to have sex as a minor with Prince Andrew in his New York mansion, in London, and on Epstein's private island in the US Virgin Islands in 2001.

Andrew has rejected all of Giuffre's claims and denied ever meeting her. His lawyers have also fought bitterly against her lawsuit, arguing that a 2009 settlement between Epstein and Giuffre shields him from liability and that Giuffre has no jurisdiction to sue.

Though Giuffre was not called to testify during Maxwell's trial, Prince Andrew was mentioned by name in court — both a Maxwell accuser identified as "Jane" as well as the former Epstein pilot Larry Visoski testified that they had seen the Duke of York travel on the financier's private jet.

Prince Andrew also has made statements that could be used against him if the Giuffre lawsuit proceeds. In a widely seen BBC interview in 2019, he described having a close friendship with Maxwell and said their relationship was how he became acquainted with Epstein.

The Duke of York's press office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

If you are a survivor of sexual assault, you can call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 800.656.HOPE (4673) or visit their website to receive confidential support.

 

Read the original article on Business Insider

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