Prince Andrew speaks to BBC about his relationship with Jeffrey Epstein

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The Duke of York has spoken for the first time about his links to Jeffrey Epstein in an interview with the BBC.

He spoke to BBC Newsnight’s Emily Maitlis in a interview recorded at Buckingham Palace on Thursday.

Maitlis said it was a “no holds barred interview”, which will be broadcast on BBC Two at 21:00 GMT on Saturday.

The duke faces serious claims over his ties to the 66-year-old US financier, who took his own life while awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges.

In 2015, Prince Andrew was named in court papers as part of a US civil case against Epstein.

One of Epstein’s accusers, Virginia Roberts – now Virginia Giuffre – said she was forced to have sex with the duke three times between 1999 and 2002, in London, New York and on a private Caribbean island owned by Epstein.

At the time she was under-age according to Florida state’s law.

The details were later officially struck from the court records when a judge ruled they were unnecessary to the case, saying they were “immaterial and impertinent” to the “central claim”.

Separately, a woman called Johanna Sjoberg alleged that the duke touched her breast while they sat on a couch in Epstein’s Manhattan apartment in 2001 in documents from a defamation case.

Buckingham Palace has issued strong denials of all allegations against the duke.

In 2015 a statement said that “any suggestion of impropriety with underage minors” by the duke was “categorically untrue”.

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