Rank has its privileges? Or is there no case to investigate? The decision by London’s Metropolitan Police Department to drop its investigation into alleged sex trafficking by Prince Andrew might be a little of both, but it’s at least a little of the former. Let’s not kid ourselves:
Is privilege the explanation, though? The Associated Press reports that Scotland Yard has also dropped a parallel probe into Ghislaine Maxwell:
In August, London’s Metropolitan Police, also known as Scotland Yard, began a review of allegations connected to Epstein, the disgraced financier who killed himself in a federal detention center in New York in August 2019 while awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges. The head of Scotland Yard, Cressida Dick, said in August that “no one is above the law,” in an allusion to Prince Andrew.
In a statement late Sunday, the force said its “review has concluded and we are taking no further action.”
It also said it would take no action over allegations, first reported by Britain’s Channel 4 News, that Epstein’s alleged accomplice, Ghislaine Maxwell, trafficked, groomed and abused women and girls in the U.K.
Maxwell may be a daughter of privilege, but those days ended long ago after the death of her media-mogul father. Lots of armchair psychologists have suggested that she ended up in Jeffrey Epstein’s orbit on the basis of that lost privilege, but lots of people have lost wealthy parents and/or their own fortunes without clinging to sex traffickers. Maxwell had plenty of connections in American and British society — Andrew, for instance — but since they all came through Epstein, those connections weren’t going to do her much good now. Clearly.
This probe was a long shot anyway. Cressida Dick got pushed into reopening the case by Giuffre Roberts’ lawsuit, which embarrassed Scotland Yard by suggesting that British authorities had ignored Andrew’s alleged participation in trafficking in the first place. “No one is above the law,” Dick declared and reopened the probe, but by this time it’s far too late to proceed with a criminal case against Andrew. If they were serious about pursuing criminal charges, London police would have done a proper investigation in the first place — when Epstein was still alive. As is also true for the United States until very recently in the long Epstein arc, of course.
Giuffre Roberts will instead have to seek accountability in civil courts, including with Andrew. On that score, she has had better news of late. Andrew has been hiding behind his mother’s skirts in Balmoral for months, hoping to avoid getting served with papers, but courts have now ruled that his attorneys can be served instead. Andrew got a favorable ruling in a US court this week, though, in his efforts to use the settlement Giuffre Roberts got from Epstein to shield him from any further legal action. That would tend to undermine his claim never to have come into contact with Giuffre Roberts, however. If that was the case, then what would Epstein’s settlement have to do with Andrew?
Anyway, regardless of what happens in court, Giuffre Roberts has already gotten some accountability out of Andrew. Reports this past week from Britain indicate that Andrew will spend the rest of his life hiding behind his mother’s skirts, and the kilts of his brother and nephew, living the life of a reclusive coward and perv. That may not be complete justice, but it’s at least a measure of it.