Prince Andrew ‘could return to public life if he wins sex case’

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 (AP)
(AP)

Princess Andrew could have his royal patronages restored if he wins his sexual assault lawsuit, it has been claimed.

The Duke of York returned his military affiliations and royal patronages to the Queen as he prepares to face a sex abuse case in a US court.

Virginia Roberts Giuffre has accused the prince of sexually abusing her in New York, London and the US Virgin Islands when she was a teenager. He denies the allegations.

The 61-year-old, who has stepped away from all public duties, is defending his case as a private citizen.

An unnamed associate of the prince has now told The Times that the Queen would welcome him back to public life if he is victorious.

The source said: “I think if the Queen is still alive and his name is cleared I would say that at that point what reason would there be for him to be barred from taking part in royal duties?

"…If he’s cleared then the question to ask is why should he not be in a position to take part in royal duties and be HRH again and have his military titles? After all, he has served in the military."

However, the individual added that the outcome could be different if Prince Charles is king by the time the case has concluded.

"It’s a different decision-maker and different people influencing him and therefore it’s slightly less predictable,” they said.

They added: "I think his brother is a very reasonable and intelligent person and I’m sure he will do what’s right for the royal family and for the country."

Andrew retains his military rank of Vice Admiral.

The duke, who served in the Royal Navy, was made Vice Admiral by the Navy on his 55th birthday in 2015.

He was due to be promoted to Admiral on his 60th birthday in 2020 but asked to defer this after he stepped down from public duties.

However, handing back his royal patronages has seen him lose his honorary titles at Royal Portrush and Royal County Down golf clubs in Northern Ireland.

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