PRINCE Andrew’s lawyers are to launch a fresh bid to get the lawsuit against him dismissed, it was reported.
Accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre said she is unlikely to accept a pay off and the Duke is currently waiting on tenterhooks for a judge to decide whether her civil lawsuit will be ditched.
If it goes ahead, Andrew will face a full civil trial in New York over claims he sexually abused Ms Giuffre on three occasions in 2001 when she was 17.
Andrew has always strongly denied all allegations made against him.
His lawyers now reportedly believe they can stop the case as federal law explicitly bans two parties who are not US residents facing each other in court.
“They believe they have a genuine argument to get this thrown out,” a source told The Mirror.
“If they can prove under federal law where Ms Giuffre has filed her case, that there is precedent not to bring a case where both parties are not US residents, then it should be halted immediately.”
Insiders have claimed Andrew could settle the lawsuit out of court if it goes to trial, with his lawyers keeping the settlement option “on the table” due to the negative impact a court case could have on other senior royals.
It’s thought that the Duke could have to pay out more than $5million (£3.7million) to persuade her to settle.
However, according to The Telegraph, Ms Giuffre is unlikely to accept any financial settlement at all – because she wants to send a message that anyone accused of preying on young girls will face the full force of the law.
The newspaper claims that she would not want to “advance the message” that money makes sexual assault go away.
Her lawyers have said that the main reason that the civil action was brought is to show that “those with power and privilege” must still face justice.
And they are aware of the potential backlash that could come about if they opted to take the Duke’s money rather than go to trial.
It comes as Andrew has found a buyer to take his Swiss chalet off his hands and could use the money to fund his mounting legal fees.
DUKE SELLS CHALET
The Duke of York has settled on a price with a mystery millionaire for his Verbier home believed to be in excess of £17million.
Andy is said to be confident that paperwork will be completed soon and needs the money to fund his sex abuse case.
But the Duke will first have to pay off Isabella de Rouvre who loaned the duke money to buy the chalet and sued him for £7million 18 months ago.
He could be left with around £10million that he can use to fund his US lawyers or even offer a settlement.
A source close to the sale said: “A buyer has been found and a price has been agreed.
“Things are proceeding. It has not been completed yet. But it is hoped to be very soon.”
A settlement would mean The Duke – and potentially other close members of the Firm – would avoid a court appearance.
But it wouldn’t go far in helping to clear his name following the duke’s disastrous Newsnight interview in 2019.
Andrew’s sex trafficker pal Ghislaine Maxwell was last week found guilty of helping to entice vulnerable teens to ex-lover Epstein’s properties for him to sexually abuse between 1994 and 2004.
She could spend the rest of her life in prison after being convicted of five out of six counts of sex trafficking for vile Epstein’s paedophile ring.
Prince Andrew’s representatives have been approached for comment.