Prince Andrew title removal is ‘act of Parliament’ says expert
Sign up for FREE now and never miss the top Royal stories again.
We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
Prince Andrew is one step closer to facing a civil trial over sexual abuse claims made by Virginia Giuffre, after US Judge Lewis Kaplan refused the Prince’s lawyers bid for the case to be dismissed. Ms Giuffre is suing the Duke for alleged sexual assault committed against her when she was 17 years old. The Duke’s reputation has already been tarnished by Ms Giuffre’s allegations, as well as his association with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein and his sex-trafficking accomplice Ghislaine Maxwell, but which of his many honours could Prince Andrew lose over the lawsuit?
Judge Lewis Kaplan of United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has dismissed Prince Andrew’s lawyers appeal to dismiss a civil case against the Duke for alleged sexual assault.
Ms Giuffre claims she was trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein and forced to have sex with the Duke when she was 17, although Prince Andrew strongly denies this.
The Duke’s attorney, Andrew Brettler, argued the case should be dismissed on the basis of a 2009 agreement between Ms Giuffre and Epstein, in which she agreed not to sue anyone connected to Epstein.
Prince Andrew has always denied all the allegations against him.
Which honours will Prince Andrew lose? (Image: Getty)
Prince Andrew has his HRH title, the Duke of York title, and eight military honours (Image: Getty)
The Prince’s legal team will next attempt to have the case dismissed due to neither the Duke nor Ms Giuffre being residents of the United States, but after today’s defeat a civil trial for the Prince is increasingly likely.
Regardless of the outcome of the legal case, Prince Andrew faces being stripped of his royal and military titles.
Will Prince Andrew lose his HRH title?
Shortly after Prince Andrew made an appearance on BBC Newsnight in November 2019 to deny the allegations against him made by Ms Giuffre, Buckingham Palace announced the Duke would step down from public duties “for the foreseeable future”.
Virginia Giuffre and her legal team (Image: Getty)
Despite withdrawing from public life, Prince Andrew has held onto his HRH title.
By contrast, when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle stepped back as senior royals, they were asked to drop the HRH title.
Speaking on the Jeremy Vine show, Royal Commentator Richard Fitzwilliams said: “There’s absolutely no doubt that Prince Andrew is a very, very serious problem for the Royal Family.
“Regarding the removal of the title, Duke of York, I mean, this would require an act of parliament.”
In order to remove Prince Andrew’s Prince or Duke title, an act of parliament would have to be passed by the House of Commons and the House of Lords, before being given the royal assent by the Queen.
Royal Family LIVE: Sussex row over Kate’s birthday [UPDATE]
Experts ‘baffled’ by phrase in Virginia Giuffre’s Epstein settlement [INSIGHT]
Prince Andrew trial date could be just months away – experts [ANALYSIS]
Prince Andrew has been decorated with eight military honours – could he lose them? (Image: Getty)
Nigel Cawthorne, author of ‘Prince Andrew: Epstein, Maxwell and the Palace’, told Express.co.uk: “A thorough and critical look by Buckingham Palace into Prince Andrew’s titles, including the HRH, is long overdue.
“Other senior royals have seen their royal paraphernalia curtailed under circumstances that both cause the monarch much less embarrassment and have less potential to careen into a constitutional crisis.”
Will Prince Andrew lose his honorary military titles?
Prince Andrew holds eight honorary military titles following his 22 years in the Royal Navy.
Prince Andrew’s military titles are:
• Colonel of the Grenadier Guards
• Deputy colonel-in-chief of the Royal Lancers
• Colonel-in-chief of the Royal Irish Regiment
• Colonel-in-chief of the Yorkshire Regiment
• Colonel-in-chief of the Small Arms School Corps
• Royal colonel of the Royal Highland Fusiliers
• Honorary air commodore of RAF Lossiemouth
• Commodore-in-chief of the Fleet Air Arm
Colonel Tim Collins, who met the prince after commanding the Royal Irish Regiment at the start of the Iraq War in 2003, told the Sunday Mirror its colonel-in-chief should “jump before he is pushed”.
Colonel Collins said: “I don’t think he’ll ever ride the storm out. The damage has been done. I think he’ll decide to jump or some more senior members of the royal family will say you’ve got to go.”
Even if the reputational damage isn’t what causes Andrew to lose his titles, he may well be stripped of his titles if the Prince remains retired from public life, and steps back from duties as a working royal – in the same way Harry and Meghan were.
In a statement from Buckingham Palace after Harry and Meghan chose to give up as working royals, the palace said: “The honorary military appointments and Royal patronages held by The Duke and Duchess will therefore be returned to Her Majesty, before being redistributed among working members of The Royal Family.”