Prince Andrew is currently caught up in a scandal worse than Prince William and Rose Hanbury’s. Jeffrey Epstein, the billionaire playboy who was recently jailed for operating a sex trafficking ring and sexually abusing girls as young as 14 years old, reportedly has links with Prince Andrew.

Prince Andrew’s friendship with Epstein goes as far back as 2001, and the Duke of York is reportedly involved in some of the crimes committed by Epstein. According to reports, Epstein paid hundreds of dollars to underage girls and lured them to his mansions in Manhattan and Palm Beach, Florida, so he could have sex with them.

Through the years that Epstein has been friends with Prince Andrew, he has been in and out of jail several times — the reason many people are now questioning Prince Andrew’s judgment. Just earlier this week, Epstein was charged again with one count of sex trafficking of minors and one count of conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking. He pleaded not guilty.

According to Attorney Geoffrey Berman, while the charged cases are from years ago, Epstein’s victims are no less entitled to their day in court. He also revealed that Epstein’s strategy was to pay his victims to find other girls he could have sex with. “In this way, Epstein created a vast network of underage victims to sexually exploit, often on a daily basis,” Berman said.  

The resurfacing of Epstein’s case has prompted followers of the royal family to question Prince Andrew, who has kept his friendship with Epstein despite his ill reputation. In 2008, Epstein pleaded guilty to procuring a minor for prostitution. Following his 18 months of incarceration, Prince Andrew caused huge embarrassment to the royal family after hanging out with Epstein. He and Epstein were even photographed strolling through Central Park together after Epstein’s release.

One of Epstein’s victims, Virginia Roberts, claimed that Epstein flew her out to London to sexually service Prince Andrew and other people. The Prince of York has reportedly been able to evade the issue because the entire British government has repeatedly helped him dodge questioning from the U.S. government.

While Buckingham Palace has categorically denied the allegations, some cannot help but believe that Prince Andrew has some involvement in Epstein’s crimes. “If the Epstein case is about to explode in the way it deserves, Prince Andrew and his alleged crimes will take the center stage they deserve,” Washington Examiner tweeted.

Prince Andrew The Duke of York the opening of a new building for the collaborative research facility at The Hartree Centre in Daresbury. Science and Technology Facilities Council Follow/Flickr