Prince Andrew Ridiculed for Relying on Jeffrey Epstein's Payoff to Accuser

Prince Andrew's attempts to get his sexual assault lawsuit thrown out have sparked a social media backlash in both Britain and America.

The Duke of York's attorney, Andrew, Brettler engaged in a series of heated exchanges with a judge on Tuesday over whether Virginia Giuffre had the right to sue him.

The prince's team argue his accuser signed a $500,000 settlement with Jeffrey Epstein that released "other potential defendants" from liability.

However, the judge indicated he may have no right to enforce the document due to a clause stipulating it was "not intended to be used by any other person."

Judge Lewis Kaplan did not arrive at a decision at the end of the hearing but indicated one would come "pretty soon."

The saga appears to have further damaged Andrew's reputation on both sides of the Atlantic, with commentators unimpressed by his reliance on Epstein's payout.

Nazir Afzal, former chief crown prosecutor for North West England, wrote on Twitter: "Prince Andrew relying on an agreement made by a Paedophile with one of his victims is a really bad look."

Former England rugby star and ex-lawyer Brian Moore wrote on Twitter: "Prince Andrew- nothing screams innocence like trying to rely on an agreement settled by a paedophile, that you didn't know existed and were not named in when it was agreed.

"Further, if you never met her, how are you a potential defendant?"

Times Radio presenter Stig Abell wrote: "Whatever happens with the Giuffre vs Prince Andrew case today, the position is that a senior member of the royal family is seeking to use a legal loophole, a technicality, to avoid scrutiny over claims of sexual abuse. That is totally unacceptable."

Prince Andrew was also ridiculed by Guardian columnist Marina Hyde, who drew attention to reports the duke's legal bills are being paid by the queen.

She wrote: "If this does succeed in persuading a judge to dismiss Giuffre's current suit, then once again someone else's money will have insulated Andrew from alleged self-created realities.

"It always seems to be someone else's money, of course. In this case, it would be the $500,000 of a dead sex trafficker.

"However, other funds are available. Andrew's mother is widely reported to be paying his legal bills for this increasingly grotesque saga, which will be running well into seven figures by now."

It was not only Andrew's reliance on the Epstein settlement that caught attention as the duke's lawyers also argued a time extension to the New York Child Victims Act was unconstitutional.

Attorney Lisa Bloom, who previously worked for Harvey Weinstein, wrote on Twitter: "Most shocking to me is that Prince Andrew's attorney wanted the judge to say NY's law giving child sexual abuse victims more time to sue is unconstitutional.

"This would have blocked access to justice for so many victims. Does the Queen know what her son is attempting to do?"

Jeffrey Epstein Mugshot and Prince Andrew
Jeffrey Epstein as seen in a Florida Department of Law Enforcement mugshot on July 25, 2013, and Prince Andrew at Carnoustie Golf Club, in Scotland, on July 20, 2018. The Duke of York is attempting to use Epstein's settlement with Virginia Giuffre to tank his sexual assault lawsuit. Florida Department of Law Enforcement via Getty Images and Stuart Franklin/Getty Images