It is the photograph that has dogged Prince Andrew for years, as well as his disgraced former friend Jeffrey Epstein and the paedophile’s alleged ‘madam’ Ghislaine Maxwell.
The prince grins broadly with his arm around the bare midriff of a 17-year-old girl, Virginia Roberts, who claims Epstein forced her into sex with a series of rich and powerful men.
Now, an uncanny series of photographs can be revealed showing how a girl, thought to be Miss Roberts, was paraded around glamorous parties by Epstein and Miss Maxwell, daughter of disgraced newspaper tycoon Robert Maxwell.
Infamous photo: Prince Andrew with his arm around Virginia Roberts at an Epstein party in London in 2001, and alleged ‘madam’ Ghislaine Maxwell
The teenager was flown to the south of France on Epstein’s private jet and the images appear to show her at an exclusive event alongside celebrities such as supermodel Naomi Campbell and Italian businessman Flavio Briatore.
Astonishingly, in these deeply disturbing images, the girl appears to be wearing the same clothes as when she posed for the earlier photograph with Andrew – an off-white, strappy top which exposed her midriff and distinctive, multi-coloured trousers.
Miss Roberts has even described in legal documents how she attended the party in St Tropez to celebrate Miss Campbell’s 31st birthday. A tranche of 2,000 pages was disclosed by the US courts released last week, and in them Miss Roberts said she ‘met Naomi Campbell at a birthday party of hers on a yacht in the South of France’.
Someone behind Miss Maxwell (left) appears to have the same trousers and top as Miss Roberts, at Naomi Campbell’s party in St Tropez, attended by Flavio Briatore (centre)
‘She is a friend of Ghislaine’s, but she was a real b**** to me,’ Miss Roberts said. Later, the same document stated: ‘I met famous friends of [Epstein’s], such as Al Gore, Heidi Klum, and Naomi Campbell.’
Her lawyer Sigrid McCawley asked: ‘When in 2001 did you go on a six-week trip with him?’ Miss Roberts replied: ‘I don’t remember exactly when it was but, it’s the one where we went to Tangier, Morocco, England… France.’
Miss Roberts wrote about another encounter with Miss Campbell – a year later – in a manuscript of her memoir, which was also included in the court documents. They all attended the grand opening of the Nikki Beach Club in St Tropez where Miss Campbell was hosting her birthday in 2002.
Out of her depth: Earlier that night, the blonde teenager, thought to be Miss Roberts, is photographed awkwardly looking around as the revellers wait to board the yacht. She is standing close to Miss Campbell, Briatore and Miss Maxwell, who is in a light-blue turtleneck
Describing that evening’s party, Miss Roberts said Miss Campbell was wearing a Dolce & Gabbana bikini top and a miniskirt.
Miss Roberts writes: ‘Ghislaine and Jeffrey kissed her cheeks and wished her a happy birthday and then I was introduced.’ Later that night they went to the main birthday party where Miss Roberts was ‘introduced to model after model and the rich men that followed around’.
Miss Roberts writes: ‘It was a fun bash, the entire crowd sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to Naomi and by the time we got back in the car to retreat for the night I was giddy from drinking and dancing all evening.’ After that party Miss Roberts claimed that Epstein told her to have sex with a wealthy American businessman.
She claimed that she performed a sex act on that businessman ‘just to shut him up’ and that it lasted for ‘two horrible minutes’. By contrast, the photographs of the 2001 party show how a blonde teenager in the distinctive trousers appeared lost and completely out of her depth standing next to ex-Formula 1 driver Eddie Jordan and Miss Campbell’s then boyfriend, Mr Briatore.
Uncanny: The partygoer is pictured again at the bash (right), which Epstein attended. In legal papers, Miss Roberts said she ‘met Naomi Campbell at a birthday party of hers on a yacht in the South of France’. Brazilian footballer Ronaldo is also shown (centre left) and Irish businessman Eddie Jordan (left)
At the glamorous event, aboard a luxury yacht named ‘Lady in Blue’, the teenager was seen next to Mr Briatore – who was once a co-owner of Queens Park Rangers Football Club – amid a crush to get on.
Mr Briatore was wearing a velvet jacket and pink shirt and Miss Campbell is wearing a black leather jacket with her midriff exposed.
The girl who is thought to be Miss Roberts can be seen at the front of the image holding her hand to her face while Miss Maxwell, in a light blue turtle neck, is pushing past bodyguards to get on board.
In another image, the girl thought to be Miss Roberts is standing awkwardly holding several jackets, near a grey-haired man in a lilac polo shirt who appears to be Epstein. The images were taken on May 19 that year, two months after Miss Roberts claims she was flown to London where she met Andrew and had sex with him.
Friendship: Epstein is pictured with his associate and one-time girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell in 2005
A judge later threw out these allegations and ordered them to be struck from the record for being ‘immaterial and impertinent’.
Prince Andrew has strenuously denied the allegations of ‘impropriety with underage minors’ as ‘categorically untrue’. Miss Maxwell also denies any wrongdoing.
Miss Roberts has claimed that Epstein flew her all over the world and loaned her out to his wealthy friends for sex. A spokesman for Miss Campbell said she did not have a close friendship with Epstein or Miss Maxwell.
Although Epstein attended her birthday party, he was invited by Mr Briatore, Miss Campbell’s then boyfriend, the spokesman added. In 2015, explaining Andrew’s decision to breach royal convention and directly tackle allegations about his private life, an aide said: ‘When there are lurid and deeply personal allegations made against you to a national newspaper that are directly linked to a civil case in which you are accused of having sexual relations with underage minors, the natural instinct is to come out and say it is not true.
‘The duke did not want these claims to go uncontested. Commenting on a member of the Royal Family’s private life or commenting an ongoing legal case goes against what the Palace would do typically.
‘The default position is no comment but these are extraordinary circumstances and given the allegations… the decision was taken that it was time to issue a denial on the record.’