Prince Andrew: Was infamous interview with Sheffield's Emily Maitlis factor in settlement decision?
The settlement – widely reported to be upwards of £10 million – comes more than two years after the Prince’s BBC Newsnight interview with Sheffield-raised journalist Emily Maitlis.
Today, defence attorney Randy Zelin told Maitlis on BBC Sounds that that interview contributed to Prince Andrew’s decision to reach a settlement.
Zelin said: “[Prince Andrew] could have used that interview to his benefit. In fact, he imploded as a result of that interview and I can promise you that interview was a motivating factor for him to settle.
“If for no other reason, it allowed him to see what an awful witness he would have made if he chose to push all of his chips in and see this thing to trial.”
During the explosive interview on November 16, 2019, Prince Andrew maintained that he did not regret his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.
When Maitlis put to the Prince claims made by Giuffre that the two had had sex in 2001, and that the royal had been profusely sweating, he made the odd revelation that due to an overdose of adrenaline in the Falklands War, he was unable to sweat.
The interview was widely seen as a PR disaster for the Prince, who resigned from all public roles 6 months later, in May 2020. In December 2021 Ghislaine Maxwell, another former friend of the Prince, was convicted of recruiting and grooming teenage girls for sex.
On January 12, 2022, a New York judge rejected attempted to throw out the lawsuit brought by Giuffre, and the following day the Queen stripped Prince Andrew of his honorary military roles and royal patronages.
In her book, Airhead, Maitlis referred to the Newsnight interview as: “the most extraordinary encounter of my professional life.”Taking to Twitter today, Maitlis wrote: “Prince Andrew told me he had never met Virginia Guiffre - so why did he just settle out of court in the civil sex claim she filed?”