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The Yorks

The Queen dramatically removes Prince Andrew’s military titles and HRH status

The Queen, the Duke of York
Stephen Lock / i-Images

The Queen has removed the Duke of York’s military titles following the decision by a US judge to proceed with his sexual assault civil case.

The 61-year-old has also lost his HRH status and his patronages.

A Buckingham Palace spokesperson 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.”

It is understood that other members of The Royal Family will now take on Prince Andrew’s former patronages.

The Ministry of Defence have offered no comment, saying this is a matter for Buckingham Palace.

Over the past few days, there has been an increasing number of calls for Her Majesty to remove Andrew’s titles.

He will now face a civil trial in the United States over allegations of sexual assault after a judge rejected his arguments to have the case thrown out.

The prince is accused by Virginia Giuffre of sexually assaulting her when she was seventeen years old. The Duke of York and his lawyers had argued that a deal she signed with 2009 with Jeffrey Epstein, for $500,000, prevented her taking action against him as in it she agreed not to pursue any other ”potential defendant”. Judge Lewis Kaplan rejected that claim.

In his ruling, Judge Kaplan said that the agreement made in 2009 could not be said to benefit the prince. He also rejected claims by Andrew’s lawyers that the case against him was ”legally insufficient”. In his 46 page ruling, the judge said: ”Ms Giuffre’s complaint is neither ‘unintelligible’ nor ‘vague’ nor ‘ambiguous’.”

The ruling, on January 12th 2022, means that the Duke of York will face a civil trial in the US. That’s not expected to take place before the autumn of this year.

The Duke has always strenuously denied the accusations made against him.