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Prince Andrew Gets Served, This Time in the US

Virginia Giuffre accuses him of sexual assault
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 13, 2021 7:30 PM CDT
Updated Sep 21, 2021 7:37 AM CDT
Sexual Abuse Suit Against Prince Andrew Reaches Court
Britain's Prince Andrew attends the Sunday service at Royal Lodge, Windsor, in April.   (Steve Parsons/Pool Photo via AP, File)

(Newser) Update: Lawyers for an accuser of Prince Andrew say they he has again been served with a sexual assault lawsuit, this time in the US. Attorneys for Virginia Giuffre sent the papers to Andrew's attorney in Los Angeles, Andrew Brettler, via email and FedEX, and both were received on Monday, reports Reuters. Andrew must respond in 21 days or face a possible default judgment. The prince's legal team disputes that he was properly served earlier in the UK. A story from earlier this month follows:

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Virginia Giuffre's sexual abuse lawsuit against Prince Andrew had its first day in court Monday, with the British royal's new lawyer calling it "baseless, nonviable and potentially unlawful." Giuffre's filing says she was coerced into having sex with Andrew by the prince, Jeffrey Epstein, and Ghislaine Maxwell when she was 17. The pretrial hearing in Federal District Court in New York provided Andrew's first public response in the case, the New York Times reports. "We have significant concerns about the propriety of this lawsuit," Andrew Brettler told the judge. The prince has denied the accusations.

Brettler was referring to his argument that the suit might be precluded by a settlement Giuffre agreed to years ago in connection with her accusations against Epstein, per CNBC. The judge cut off that argument, saying it wasn't the time to discuss whether the suit is legal. Brettler also argued that Andrew was not legally served with the lawsuit last month in England, as Giuffre's lawyers contend. Judge Lewis Kaplan said he would hear arguments on that point, though he couldn't say it would be worthwhile. "I can see a lot of legal fees being spent and time being expended and delay, which ultimately may not be terribly productive for anyone," Kaplan said.

A British court should have a say on whether Andrew was properly served, Brettler told the judge, citing Hague Convention rules. Kaplan told him that adherence to the Hague Convention is not required, per the Wall Street Journal. The back-and-forth on how the suit was or wasn't served eventually will be resolved, the judge said. "I think we are making this a lot more complicated than it really is," Kaplan told both sides, per the AP. "Let's cut out all the technicalities and get to the substance." The case will be litigated, he said. (Read more Prince Andrew stories.)

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