Buckingham Palace is bracing for a fresh round of painful headlines following the Prince Andrew saga, as Scotland Yard confirms it is working with the FBI and an explosive television interview is set to air.
On Thursday, London's Metropolitan police confirmed for the first time it was speaking with the FBI amid its investigation into sex trafficking by Prince Andrew's billionaire friend, Jeffery Epstein.
"The Metropolitan Police Service has liaised with other law enforcement organisations," commander Alex Murray from its specialist crime unit said, reports News.com.au.
But officers have yet to receive a formal request asking for assistance in connection with the allegations, he said.
The confirmation comes after Prince Andrew said he would be willing to explain what he knows about Epstein, a convicted paedophile, under oath.
"Of course, I am willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations, if required," he said when he stepped down from his royal duties earlier this month.
Meanwhile, Prince Andrew's accuser Virginia Giuffre is set to air her allegations to a prime time audience on the BBC's investigative show Panorama on Monday night, UK time.
A BBC insider told The Sun: "If viewers thought the Newsnight interview was a car crash, then this will be even more gripping.
"Virginia makes some explosive revelations and she leaves no stone unturned. Prince Andrew will have a lot of explaining to do."
A preview of the Panorama interview showed Ms Giuffre choking up as she described her alleged encounters with the Prince.
"It was a really scary time in my life," she said.
"He knows what happened. I know what happened. And there's only one of us telling the truth."
Ms Giuffre alleges she was just 15 years old when she was recruited as a 'sex slave' for Epstein by his British socialite girlfriend, Ghislaine Maxwell.
She was then introduced to Prince Andrew in London in 2001 when she was 17 and was forced to have sex with him on three occasions, she claims.
A photo appears to show the Duke and Ms Giuffre – then Roberts – together at Maxwell's house in the up-market London suburb of Belgravia.
But Prince Andrew says he has "no memory" of the photograph ever being taken. He has consistently denied having sex with Mrs Giuffre.
"From the investigations that we've done, you can't prove whether or not that photograph is faked or not," he told BBC Newsnight.
"But I don't remember that photograph ever being taken," he said.
Buckingham Palace says the allegations are "false and without any foundation", adding that any suggestion of impropriety with under-age minors by the Duke is "categorically untrue".
POLICE DISMISS CLAIMS
In July 2015, Ms Giuffre went to the Metropolitan Police with her claims, but was ultimately turned away.
Commander Murray said that was because the allegations "largely focused on activities and relationships outside the UK".
"In July 2015 the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) confirmed it had received an allegation of non-recent trafficking for sexual exploitation," he said.
"The allegation was made against a US national, Jeffrey Epstein, and a British woman. It related to events outside of the UK and an allegation of trafficking to central London in March 2001.
"The MPS always takes any allegations concerning sexual exploitation seriously. Officers assessed the available evidence, interviewed the complainant and obtained early investigative advice from the Crown Prosecution Service.
"Following the legal advice, it was clear that any investigation into human trafficking would be largely focused on activities and relationships outside the UK.
"We therefore concluded that the MPS was not the appropriate authority to conduct inquiries in these circumstances and, in November 2016, a decision was made that this matter would not proceed to a full criminal investigation."
The force said it reviewed its decision following Epstein's death in August, but its position remained unchanged.
Epstein killed himself in prison while awaiting trial on charges of conspiracy and trafficking minors for sex.
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