Prince Andrew faces key court hearing in fight to dismiss sex-assault suit

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Prince Andrew faces a key day in court Tuesday as he attempts to get the damning sex-assault lawsuit against him thrown out.

A Manhattan federal court teleconference has been set for 10 a.m. to hear the scandal-scarred royal’s formal arguments to toss the suit brought by longtime accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre.

The hearing comes a day after the court released details of the secret $500,000 settlement that Giuffre, 38, reached in 2009 with the prince’s pedophile pal Jeffrey Epstein — one that Andrew’s lawyers claim also shields him from legal liability.

But Giuffre’s lawyer, David Boies, has insisted the wording of the deal instead proves it is “irrelevant” to the claims against Andrew.

It was not immediately clear if Andrew — the 61-year-old middle son of Queen Elizabeth II — would join the call, nor when a ruling on his motion to dismiss would be made.

Giuffre has for years insisted that Epstein and his now-convicted madam, Ghislaine Maxwell, forced her to have “disgusting” sex with the prince three times in London, New York and on Epstein’s private island in the Caribbean.

Andrew has gone through great lengths to avoid Giuffre’s suit — repeatedly dodging service of the legal papers and then filing documents to delay or dismiss her claims.

Most recently, Manhattan federal Judge Lewis Kaplan denied his argument that Giuffre’s suit should not go forward because she may actually live in Australia.

Andrew’s legal team has called the lawsuit “baseless” and said he “unequivocally denies Giuffre’s false allegations against him.”

They wrote that Giuffre sued Andrew “to achieve another payday,” saying, “Epstein’s abuse of Giuffre does not justify her public campaign against Prince Andrew.”

Jeffrey Epstein reached a settlement with Virginia Roberts Giuffre.
New York State Sex Offender Registry via AP, File

The prince’s US attorney, Andrew Brettler, has also argued that the accuser’s payout from Epstein also protected his royal buddy “from any and all potential liability.”

The agreement, made public Monday, says it releases “any other person or entity who could have been included as a potential defendant (‘Other Potential Defendants’) from all, and all manner of, action and actions of Virginia Roberts, including State or Federal, cause and causes of action.”

However, Giuffre’s attorney, Boies, said in a pre-hearing statement that “the release does not mention Prince Andrew” and involves Epstein’s abuse of the then-teen in Florida, not the allegations against the UK royal.

Andrew has always vehemently denied the allegations, claiming in a BBC interview that he had no recollection of ever meeting Giuffre — even though a now-infamous photo shows him posing with an arm around her on the night she alleges they first met.

Britain's Prince Andrew, Duke of York
Prince Andrew has gone through great lengths to avoid Virginia Roberts Giuffre’s lawsuit.
LINDSEY PARNABY/AFP via Getty Images

In the same interview, he claimed that her allegations of “sweaty” dancing and then sex could not be true because he has a condition that stops him from sweating — but his legal team admitted they could not provide documentation to prove it after Giuffre’s lawyers sought it.

That reported condition could be tested if the case does go forward, quipped Spencer Kuvin, who represents victims of Epstein.

“Andrew is going to have a hard time on this … I think he is going to still have to sweat on this lawsuit for a while. That is, if he can,” Kuvin told The Sun.

If the case goes to trial and Giuffre wins, Andrew — who was booted from royal duties over the scandal — could be ordered to pay Giuffre damages.

Virginia Roberts Giuffre
Virginia Roberts Giuffre has said Ghislaine Maxwell forced her to have sex with Prince Andrew three times.
BBC Panorama via AP

Tuesday’s hearing is a week after the royal’s close friend, media heiress Maxwell, 60, was convicted of procuring underage girls for Epstein.

The pedophile moneyman killed himself in 2019 ahead of his own trial on sex-crime charges.

Andrew has never been charged criminally, and UK police have repeatedly ruled out a full investigation into Giuffre’s allegations that she first had sex with him at Maxwell’s London home in 2001.

US federal prosecutors have repeatedly accused Andrew of refusing to be interviewed over Epstein’s sex trafficking. A spokesman for the US Attorney’s office declined to comment on Monday and it was not clear if prosecutors still want to talk to him.

With Post wires

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