The Duke of York has stepped down from his role as Admiral of the Sea Cadet Corps as the scandal surrounding his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein continues.
Prince Andrew was appointed to the position in 1992 but the youth charity yesterday confirmed he had stepped down because of his relationship with paedophile Epstein.
A spokesman told The Sunday Post: “The Sea Cadets is a modern youth development charity and following the recent announcement that the Duke of York is stepping back from royal duties we can confirm he will stand down from the position of admiral of the Sea Cadet Corps with immediate effect.”
References to Prince Andrew were also removed from the charity’s website last week. The “History” section previously stated: “The Queen is our Patron and HRH The Prince Andrew Duke of York KG GCVO is our Admiral of the Corps.”
It now states: “Today we are proud to have HM The Queen as our Patron.”
Meanwhile, the Duke is also no longer patron of one Scottish golf club after its merger with another club. A plaque commemorating his involvement has been removed.
He has been under intense pressure over his connection with Epstein, who killed himself in prison after being accused of sex-trafficking.
Prince Andrew has denied witnessing any abuse but a lawyer for one of Epstein’s accusers want the Duke to testify in court.
In a TV interview, the royal said he could not remember meeting Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who claims she slept with Prince Andrew when she was 17 on the instructions of Ghislaine Maxwell, a close friend of Epstein.
The Sea Cadets charity works with 15,000 young people aged between 10 and 18 at 400 units across the UK.
Prince Andrew visited a unit in Fife last year and unveiled a plaque. The Sea Cadets said the unit in Methil has no plans to remove the plaque.
The Duke’s patronage of Royal Montrose Golf Club has also ended after a merger on November 1 with the Montrose Mercantile Golf Club.
Club manager Mike Cummins said: “The Royal Montrose Mercantile Golf Club does not have a patron.”
In 2010 the Duke unveiled a plaque in his honour at Royal Montrose Golf Club. It has been removed.
Prince Andrew remains patron of the Royal Perth Golf Society. Club secretary Paul Lewis said: “We continue to monitor the situation and cannot add anything further.”
The Duke is facing fresh scrutiny after the BBC aired an interview with accuser Virginia Roberts Giuffre.
Ms Roberts Giuffre claims she was trafficked to London by Epstein and forced to sleep with the Duke when she was a teenager, which Andrew categorically denies.
The Duke also said he has no memory of a photo being taken with his arm around Ms Roberts Giuffre’s waist at Ms Maxwell’s house.
In last week’s interview Ms Roberts Giuffre spoke of how she was left “horrified and ashamed” after the alleged encounter in 2001.
Prince Andrew has quit public life after his Newsnight interview on November 16 in which he sought to address Ms Roberts Giuffre’s claims.
During the interview, the Duke said an alleged encounter with Ms Giuffre in 2001 did not happen as he spent the day with his daughter, Princess Beatrice, taking her to Pizza Express in Woking for a party.
A Buckingham Palace spokesman said: “It is emphatically denied that the Duke of York had any form of sexual contact or relationship with Virginia Roberts. Any claim to the contrary is false and without foundation. The Duke of York has stepped back from his public duties and patronages for the foreseeable future. We do not expect him to be undertaking any activity in support of the patronages during this period.”
New allegation as woman claims she had sex with Prince Andrew
The Duke of York is facing a new allegation from a woman who has come forward to claim she was a victim of Jeffrey Epstein.
The woman, who claims she had sex with Prince Andrew, has spoken to lawyers who represent Epstein’s accusers.
There is no suggestion there is evidence she was coerced into having sex with the Duke.
The woman has not been named and lawyers are understood to be carrying out a rigorous investigation of her claims.
They could include her allegations in a new court filing against Epstein’s estate.
More than a dozen women have filed lawsuits saying they were abused by the convicted paedophile.
A spokeswoman for the Duke said: “We don’t comment on anonymous allegations.”
Earlier this week, it was reported that Prince Philip ordered his second son to step down for the sake of the monarchy amid a backlash over the Prince Andrew’s connections with Epstein.
The Prince of Wales is also believed to have given his younger sibling a dressing down at a crunch summit where he effectively retired the Duke from his public duties.
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