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The Royal Family would probably very much like to be excluded from the narrative of Jeffrey Epstein, the accused pedophile and convicted sex offender, with whom they have been linked thanks to his and Prince Andrew's friendship. For now, however, they're doubling down on their stance that the Duke of York was not privy to Epstein's alleged crimes, and that he has not committed any of his own.
The second statement issued by the Palace came after the Daily Mail published a video seeming to show the Prince inside Epstein's New York City mansion in 2010, reigniting questions of what Andrew did or didn't know about Epstein's alleged behavior considering his proximity. (Epstein was convicted of having sexual relations with a minor two years prior to when the photo was taken.)
“The Duke of York has been appalled by the recent reports of Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged crimes," reads the statement issued on Monday, according to Town & Country. "His Royal Highness deplores the exploitation of any human being and the suggestion he would condone, participate in or encourage any such behaviour is abhorrent.”
The Palace previously denied any wrongdoing on Prince Andrew's part after Epstein's apparent suicide in jail last weekend, as well as the simultaneous release of previously sealed court documents in which the Duke of York was accused of sexual assault. "Any suggestion of impropriety with underage minors is categorically untrue,” reads the statement, according to NBC.
Since the scandal has taken off, Prince Andrew has been laying low. According to a report from Vanity Fair, Andrew spent the day following Epstein's death with his mother, Queen Elizabeth, attending church near her Scottish residence at Balmoral.