It was Prince Andrew's "stamp of approval" that gave British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell some credibility among New York's elite. She was, reportedly, able to weasel her way into the most rich and powerful Big Apple crowd because of the Duke of York's help.
Maxwell's former family friend Helen Kirwan-Taylor wrote about the closeness of Prince Andrew and Maxwell in the Telegraph. She said that Maxwell tried to stay away from London's high society due to the shame brought on by her father, newspaper mogul Robert Maxwell.
The publisher died amid accusations that he stole from his workers' pension benefit, prompting his daughter to shun London's posh circle. However, Ghislaine transported herself to New York and, with Prince Andrew's help, connected with the right people stateside.
New York's elite thought Ghislaine was "OK" because she is friends with Prince Andrew. According to Kirwan-Taylor, the socialite needed just one person to vouch for her and this person happened to be British royalty.
Soon, Ghislaine met the billionaire Jeffrey Epstein, who then became friends with the Duke of York. Kirwan-Taylor admitted that it was acceptable and quite flattering to be associated with Ghislaine and Epstein at that time. But, pretty soon, rumors of her sex trafficking activities with the pedophile slowly buzzed.
Prince Andrew is, also, embroiled in this sex trafficking scandal but has yet to talk with authorities in the U.S. regarding what he knows about his friends' illegal activities. While Epstein killed himself in prison in Aug. 2019, Ghislaine is, now, at a New York prison awaiting her trial. The judge has not permitted her to post bail.
Meanwhile, a witness came forward to say that she was Esptein's sex slave at barely 18 years old and had more than one sexual encounter with the Duke of York. Prince Andrew, however, said he doesn't recall ever meeting Virginia Giuffre at Epstein's house parties.
Another witness has come forward with information that she saw Prince Andrew dancing with Giuffre on the night the royal claimed he was elsewhere. Shukri Walker said that she's certain it's the royal because Prince Andrew stepped on her foot on the dance floor and he apologized.
Walker's claim supports Giuffre's accusation that she was forced by Epstein to have sex with the Duke of York after a night out in central London. This happened in 2001 but Prince Andrew claimed he recalls being at the Pizza Express on the said night.
The witness said that she has gotten in touch with Lisa Bloom, the lawyer representing the victim of Epstein, including Guiffre. Bloom said that she informed the FBI of Walker's witness account.
U.S. authorities have been trying to get the Duke of York to talk about what he knows of Epstein's sex trafficking activities. But, Prince Andrew's legal team is protecting the royal from becoming a suspect instead of a witness.