Prince Andrew has been on the ropes over his relationship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, who killed himself in prison in August while awaiting trial on fresh sex-trafficking and conspiracy charges.
In his first interview since becoming engulfed by the scandal, Andrew told BBC presenter Emily Maitlis that he regretted standing by Epstein after the financier pled guilty to soliciting underage sex in 2008.
The Duke of York met Epstein after he was released from prison in 2010, and has admitted to spending time with the billionaire more than once a year, and staying in “a number of his residences.”
But since an avalanche of fresh allegations against Epstein and his death in a New York jail, Andrew said “I kick myself” for his association with the financier. He added that he fell short of standards expected of the British royal family.
In a clip played on BBC News tonight, he said: “I stayed with him and that’s…that’s…that’s the bit that…that…that, as it were, I kick myself for on a daily basis because it was not something that was becoming of a member of the royal family and we try and uphold the highest standards and practices and I let the side down, simple as that.”
Prince Andrew also said he has no memory of meeting Epstein accuser Victoria Roberts Giuffre, who claims she was coerced into having sex with the Duke when she was 17. “I have no recollection of ever meeting this lady, none whatsoever,” he said.
The full interview, Prince Andrew & The Epstein Scandal: The Newsnight Interview, airs Saturday at 9PM GMT on BBC Two.