Prince Andrew faces bombshell claims he may have dated convicted sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell.
In an interview for the upcoming doco Ghislaine, Prince Andrew and the Paedophile – which airs in Britain on Wednesday (Australian time) — ex-Buckingham Palace guard Paul Page said the embattled prince and disgraced socialite were once more than friends.
The allegations come at a time of strife for Andrew, who faces a potential civil trial in the US after being accused of child sexual abuse by Virginia Giuffre. She alleges she was trafficked as a minor to him by convicted child sex-trafficker Jeffrey Epstein.
Last week, after a US court denied his last-ditch bid to throw out Ms Giuffre’s lawsuit, the prince was stripped of his royal patronages and the “His Royal Highness” title by his mother, the Queen.
The accusations to be revealed in Wednesday’s TV documentary will provide more fuel for the fires encircling the embattled Duke of York.
“From the way she was allowed to enter and exit the palace, at will, we realised … suspected, that [Maxwell] may have had an intimate relationship with Prince Andrew,” the former Buckingham Palace royal protection officer said in an excerpt released on Tuesday.
Maxwell, 60, is in a New York jail awaiting sentencing after being convicted in December of sex trafficking of a minor, transporting a minor with the intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, and three related counts of conspiracy.
Her former boyfriend Epstein took his own life in 2019 in a Manhattan jail cell while awaiting trial on sex abuse charges of his own.
Andrew, the Queen’s second son and often said to be her favourite, has long acknowledged he was friends with Epstein and Maxwell. The new allegations suggest there might have been more to his relationship with Maxwell.
Prince Andrew was married to the former Sarah Ferguson from 1986 until 1996. The couple have remained close in the years since their divorce.
Mr Page said Maxwell was a regular visitor to the palace over some years.
“A colleague of mine remembered her coming in four times in one day from the morning till the evening – she kept coming in and out, in and out,” he said.
Mr Page said he met Maxwell in 2001 — the same year Andrew was photographed with Ms Giuffre. The prince has denied Ms Giuffre’s allegations, and says he has no recollection of ever meeting her.
The doco also features interviews with members of Maxwell and Epstein’s social circle.
“I got the sense that Prince Andrew and Ghislaine had probably been girlfriend and boyfriend in the past,” a former friend of Maxwell is quoted saying.
“They had an easy warmth around each other.”
Mr Page also reveals more of the Duke of York’s bizarre interests in the ITV documentary. He says the prince kept “50 or 60 stuffed toys” on his bed and would “shout and scream” if they were not in their correct order.
Mr Page said a laminated picture of the bears was added to the display, to ensure staff put the stuff toys back in the right order and avoided Andrew becoming “verbally abusive”.