Queen Elizabeth Makes A Bold Move Ahead Of Prince Andrew's Trial

Prince Andrew is facing a civil trial after being hit with sexual assault allegations that are related to the royal's friendship with Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell. Virginia Roberts Giuffre alleges that she was a victim of Epstein's sex trafficking, and was also sexually assaulted by Prince Andrew three times between 1999 and 2002. Giuffre served Andrew with a civil lawsuit on August 27, 2021 at his Royal Lodge home in Windsor (per People). While his lawyers had moved to have the case dismissed, a U.S. judge ruled that it can proceed, probably later on this year.

Although Andrew has denied Giuffre's claims, it has undoubtedly put his future as a member of the royal family in jeopardy. He has already stepped back from his duties, and his brother, the future king, was reportedly concerned about the damage Andrew could do to the monarchy. "This will be unwelcome reputational damage to the institution" of the monarchy, a source close to Prince Charles told the Times of London. "This will probably further strengthen in the prince's mind that a way back for the duke is demonstrably not possible, because the specter of this [accusation] raises its head with hideous regularity."

Still, Queen Elizabeth seemed to be standing by Andrew throughout the scandal. But it appears that she has now had a change of heart.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Prince Andrew has been stripped of his military titles and patronages

As the civil suit against Prince Andrew proceeds, Queen Elizabeth has taken away his military titles and charities. As a result, he will no longer use "His Royal Highness" in any official capacity. "With The Queen's approval and agreement, the Duke of York's military affiliations and royal patronages have been returned to the queen," according to a statement from Buckingham Palace. "The Duke of York will continue not to undertake any public duties and is defending this case as a private citizen."

And a source told CNN that "all of the Duke's roles have been handed back to the queen with immediate effect for redistribution to other members of the Royal Family. For clarity, they will not return to The Duke of York." Elizabeth's decision came after more than 150 military veterans wrote to her, requesting that she take away Andrew's honorary military roles. "Were this any other senior military officer it is inconceivable that he would still be in post," the letter reportedly stated (per The Guardian). "Officers of the British armed forces must adhere to the very highest standards of probity, honesty and honourable conduct. These are standards which Prince Andrew has fallen well short of." 

The veterans went on to describe Andrew as "toxic," adding, "We understand that he is your son, but we write to you in your capacity as head of state and as commander-in-chief of the army, navy and air force."