Before Epstein: All the most controversial Prince Andrew stories
Prince Andrew’s damning association with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein might have been the final straw that broke the camel’s back, but those following the Royal family know he has a reputation for being an incessant hellraiser. Let us look back at some of the allegations plaguing his royal highness Prince Andrew even before the Epstein scandal surfaced.
Rohan Silva, a senior political aide and Evening Standard columnist, accused Prince Andrew of using the N-word, according to a scoop by Guardian. Silva claimed that when asked whether the government department responsible for trade “could be doing a better job”, Prince Andrew responded saying, “Well, if you’ll pardon the expression, that really is the N-word in the woodpile.”
Silva later told the Evening Standard, “for a long time afterwards, I kicked myself for not confronting the Prince on his choice of words”. The Guardian also affirmed Buckingham Palace has since denied these allegations.
Air miles Andy
Prince Andrew’s affinity for billionaire Jeffrey Epstein is less surprising when considering his expensive lifestyle. Andrew was raised in a princely splendor and his fondness for expensive transport earned him the moniker “Air Miles Andy”. According to Express UK, Prince Andrew would use helicopters to attend gatherings he could reach easily by car.
In 2003, a report claimed Duke racked up a whopping £325,000 for his excursions. That amount was inclusive of the costs he made when he flew in a helicopter to Oxford and used RAF planes to travel to Scotland for his golfing jaunts. Andrew has been accused of wasting an exorbitant amount of taxpayers’ money chartering jets & helicopters in order to keep up his extravagant lifestyle.
From 2001 to 2011, the Duke of York was appointed as Britain’s “special representative” for Trade & Investment after he retired from the Navy. An article published in The Telegraph reported that Prince Andrew racked up travel bills of almost £620,000 for his international tours.
Epstein wasn’t the only controversial figure connected to Prince Andrew. During his time as British Envoy, the Duke of York was slammed for alleged relations with former Libyan dictator Muammar Qaddafi’s son, per the BBC. Andrew’s ties with Kazakhstan brought public scrutiny. Questions also arose when he was seen lunching at Buckingham Palace with a “notorious” member of the former Tunisian regime.
Tatiana Gfoeller, a veteran U.S. diplomat posted in Kazakhstan previously, said Prince Andrew had criticized the Serious Fraud Office probe of an arms deal between BAE and Saudi Arabia, and accused Guardian journalists of “poking their noses everywhere” for investigating the deal.
According to The Sun, a British tabloid, Prince Andrew was known for being particularly hostile to his staff. A former royal aide professed, “I’ve seen him treat his staff in a shocking, appalling way. He’s been incredibly rude to his personal protection officers, literally throwing things on the ground and demanding that they ‘f***ing pick them up’. No social graces at all”.
The report also stated that Prince Andrew liked to “get his own way” even if that meant exploiting his own protection officers. Paul Page, a former royal protection officer, told The Sun that Andrew once “had screamed at security when they rushed to investigate an intruder lurking in the corridor near the Queen’s bedroom — only to find it was actually the Prince”.
The Duke of York’s boorish demeanor also translated to his business dealings. In 2010, a secret cable published by Wikileaks revealed a U.S. ambassador stating Andrew had spoken “cockily” during their interaction which “verged on rude”.
Prince Andrew was also called out for his rude behavior by Australian security officials who refused to indulge his request to forgo security procedures. One of the officials was later quoted saying, “Who does he think he is? What a pompous prat. Everyone has to go through security screening. He should be happy to do so and set an example.”