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Queen strips Prince Andrew of charity patronages

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It comes as he faces civil action in a US court

Buckingham Palace has stripped Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, of all charity patronages ahead of a potential civil court action over sexual abuse claims.

Yesterday Buckingham Palace issued a statement saying all of the prince’s military affiliations and royal patronages had been returned to the queen.

He will also stop using the title HRH.

The duke is facing claims he sexually assaulted Virginia Giuffre when she was 17 years old, which he denies.

Giuffre, now 38, says she was forced into sex with the duke by paedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell, the British media heiress who was convicted in New York last month of sex-trafficking girls for the billionaire financier.

The palace said: “With the Queen’s approval and agreement, the Duke of York’s military affiliations and royal patronages have been returned to the Queen. The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen.”

Prince Andrew is patron of more than 100 charities and organisations. Previous to being named in the Jeffery Epstein sex abuse scandal this numbered around 230.

When the allegations were first made in 2019, the Tall Ships Youth Trust, the British Deaf Association, the Children’s Foundation and Fight for Sight cut ties with the duke, while he stepped down from the Outward Bound Trust just months after taking over the patronage from his father, Prince Philip.

Many immediately cut ties after a disastrous interview with BBC Newsnight in which the duke denied he had had sex with Giuffre, a 17-year-old trafficking victim.

Remaining patronages are mostly small golf and boating clubs.

As ninth in line to the throne, and the fourth-most senior adult in the line of succession, Andrew will remain as a counsellor of state, able to undertake official duties if the sovereign is temporarily incapacitated through illness or abroad.