How Prince William Reacted When Asked About Prince Andrew's Scandal

Prince William does not seem interested in discussing his uncle Prince Andrew's sexual assault allegations. On Wednesday, Jan. 19, Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton made an appearance at a charity event where ITV reporter Chris Ship asked Prince William about the new lawsuit against Prince Andrew. Prince William's response was: "Sorry, I can't hear you."

Prince Andrew has long been accused of sexual assault against an underage girl, and general involvement in the alleged sex trafficking operation of Jeffrey Epstein. He is currently facing a civil lawsuit from Virginia Roberts Giuffre, who claims that Andrew sexually assaulted her when she was 17 years old with the help of Epstein's organization. Earlier this month, Prince Andrew's legal team tried to have the case dismissed on the grounds that Giuffre reached a settlement with Epstein in which she agreed not to sue any other "potential defendant." The motion was denied.

When it became clear that the lawsuit against Prince Andrew would move forward, the royal family took yet another step in severing ties to him. All of his honorary military affiliations and royal charitable patronages were returned to Queen Elizabeth II this month. It was in that context that Ship asked Prince William: "Do you support Prince Andrew?"

"Sorry, I can't hear you," the heir responded. When Ship repeated the question, Prince William reportedly said nothing and made his way quickly out of the situation. However, according to a report by PEOPLEthe royal family has privately discussed the situation with Prince Andrew at great length.

This is the second time a member of the family has ignored questions about Prince Andrew this month. The day after Prince Andrew's newly reduced role was announced, Prince Charles made an appearance in Aberdeenshire. A reporter asked: Your Royal Highness, can I ask your view on your brother's position, Prince Andrew? How do you view it?"

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Prince Charles reportedly pretended not to hear the question but quickly moved on to shake the hands of other people and stir up other conversations. So far, Prince Andrew has retained his title as Duke of York, but an official statement from the queen said that he "is defending this case as a private citizen."

Giuffre's latest statement on the case reads: "I am holding Prince Andrew accountable for what he did to me. The powerful and rich are not exempt from being held responsible for their actions. I hope that other victims will see that it is possible not to live in silence and fear, but to reclaim one's life by speaking out and demanding justice."