Prince Andrew’s ‘personal importance’ as trade envoy: ‘Had to send a deputy in to smooth out’ | royal | News


Prince Andrew civil case: what happens next?

The Duke of York has agreed to give a sworn statement next month in the UK in connection with the civil sexual assault case against him. Virginia Roberts Giuffre is suing the Queen’s second son for allegedly sexually assaulting her three times when she was 17 and being trafficked by convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein. Andrew has repeatedly denied all the allegations against him and his lawyers have said he is prepared to face a jury trial to clear his name.

He will face a deposition – giving evidence to lawyers to use in court – in London on March 10.

The news comes after Andrew was stripped of his military titles and royal patronages last month.

Further questions about Andrew’s personality have been raised in unearthed reports as Andrew continues to face unwanted scrutiny.

Sir Ivor Roberts, former ambassador to Italy, Yugoslavia and Ireland, questioned Andrew’s relevance in his former role as the UK’s special representative for international trade and investment in a 2019 interview with the Times.

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Andrew’s suitability for the role has been questioned. (Image: GETTY)

Prince Andrew

Prince Andrew will face a deposition next month. (Image: GETTY)

He recalled that Andrew “rubbed people the wrong way”, adding: “Andrew was full of his own importance and there was a lot of ceremony.”

In a separate interview with the Daily Mail in 2011, Sir Ivor said Andrew had met “a fairly eminent person in the fashion world” in Florence in 2004.

The royal reportedly said: ‘I’ve never heard of you’ when she introduced herself.

He said: “He has this rather unfortunate way of being blunt to the point of rudeness. I was supposed to send my assistant next week to smooth out the ruffled feathers.

Prince Andrew

Andrew earned the nickname “Airmiles Andy” thanks to his frequent travels. (Image: GETTY)

“I never would have thought of him as the natural choice to be sent trading in the first place. If the bottom line is negative, you wonder if he should be in that position.

Andrew did not receive a salary for the role of trade envoy, but participated in many expense-paid delegations.

He also reportedly used government-paid trips for personal recreation on occasion, earning him the nickname “Airmiles Andy”.

According to The Telegraph, Andrew spent £620,000 as a trade envoy in 2010, including £154,000 on hotels, food and hospitality and a further £465,000 on travel.

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Prince Andrew

Others praised Andrew for the way he did his job. (Image: GETTY)

Simon Wilson was Britain’s deputy chief of mission in Bahrain from 2001 to 2005 and lifted the lid on his collaboration with the Duke of York in a 2010 interview with the Daily Mail.

He recalled: “HRH The Duke of York was more commonly known among the British diplomatic community in the Gulf as HBH: His Buffoon Highness.

“That nickname stemmed from his childish obsession with doing the exact opposite of what was agreed upon in pre-visit meetings with his staff.”

He added: ‘He seemed to consider himself an expert in all areas… Colleagues attribute this to an inferiority complex related to mental disorders.’

Prince Andrew

Andrew will attend a thanksgiving service in memory of his father next month. (Image: GETTY)

Others, however, said Andrew was actually successful in his role.

Robert Jobson has written several books on the royal family. Writing for CNN in 2015, he said: “I have personally witnessed Andrew being a good, no-nonsense communicator at events he has inspired and organized.

“He is especially passionate about dealing with young start-up entrepreneurs and connecting them with successful businesses at networking and pitching events.

“Andrew is direct and straight to the point, and his methods seem to be working.

“There’s no doubt he’s passionate about these issues and, before this sex scandal exploded in his face, he was making a good fist of it.”

Despite the ongoing case, Andrew is set to make a public appearance next month at a memorial service for his father, the Duke of Edinburgh.

A service of thanksgiving will be held at Westminster Abbey on March 29, attended by most members of the Royal Family.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, meanwhile, have yet to confirm whether they will return from California to join other senior royals.

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