A lawyer representing five victims of paedophile billionaire Jeffrey Epstein has warned Prince Andrew he can ‘only run for so long’ from questions about his friendship with the disgraced financier.
Appearing on Lorraine this morning, Lisa Bloom added that it was time for the Duke of York’s representatives to contact the FBI and open up about the exact nature of his association with Epstein.
Andrew has faced mounting pressure in recent days after both the FBI and New York state attorney Geoffrey Berman accused him of ‘zero co-operation’.
The US officials are seeking to interview the royal about his relationship with Epstein – something that Andrew previously said he was happy to discuss with authorities.
The royal furiously denied claims he had been dodging an interview, while the Queen and Prince Charles held crisis talks over the situation.
Prince Andrew (left) drives himself from Windsor the day after being criticised by a US prosecutor for giving ‘zero co-operation’ with their investigation into Epstein
Attorney Ms Bloom has now called on the Duke of York to co-operate with US authorities.
She said: ‘It’s time for his representatives to pick up the phone call the FBI and answer their questions.
‘Push has come to shove. I represent five women who say they were sexually assaulted by Epstein we are trying to get to the bottom of this so they can start healing now is the time for Prince Andrew to cooperate
‘He was close with Epstein I think it’s impossible he did not know what was going on, if he is innocent as he says there is no reason he would not want to talk
‘Now is the time that everybody is being investigated which is why he needs to speak
‘I do think he’s going to have to answer questions, he can only run for so long. He can only hide behind his attorneys for so long.’
Ms Bloom added that one of the women she represents claims to have seen Prince Andrew at the Tramp Nightclub with Virginia Roberts in 2001.
Ms Roberts claims she was Epstein’s sex slave and that she had sex with the Duke of York three times, including once in London when she was 17, once in New York and another time at Epstein’s private Caribbean island of Little St James.
Prince Andrew has ’emphatically’ denied any relationship with the mother-of-three, who now lives in Cairns in Australia, ‘in any form’ and that he does not recall a 2001 picture of him with Ms Roberts being taken.
Virginia Roberts says this photograph shows her with Prince Andrew at Ghislaine Maxwell’s flat (she is pictured in the background) in west London in early 2001
Queen Elizabeth is joined by Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales and other members of the royal family at Buckingham Palace earlier this month
Jeffrey Epstein is pictured with his associate and one-time girlfriend Ghislaine Maxwell in 2005. Roberts alleged Maxwell was involved in trafficking girls for Epstein
Lisa Bloom, a lawyer representing five victims of paedophile billionaire Jeffrey Epstein, has warned Prince Andrew he can ‘only run for so long’ and called on him to answer the FBI’s questions
It comes as the Queen and Prince Charles held crisis talks about the scandal.
The pair took time away from estate business at Sandringham for an emergency meeting after Andrew was criticised by the FBI for offering ‘zero-cooperation’ with their probe into the billionaire paedophile.
A royal source told The Sun: ‘Both had hoped the Duke of York could perhaps be rehabilitated back into public life in time but that is now looking increasingly unlikely.’
It comes amid ‘growing frustration’ among members of the royal family over the international attention the Duke of York’s ties to Epstein is bringing.
On Tuesday, Andrew furiously denied claims by New York state attorney Geoffrey Berman that he had not cooperated with the US probe, insisting to friends that he would be happy to comment but ‘hadn’t been approached yet’.
And there was yet more attention on the Epstein case after it emerged the Met Police could reopen their own sex-trafficking investigation into the convicted sex offender, who hanged himself in his New York prison cell last year.
Queen Elizabeth and Prince Andrew, Duke of York attend church at St Mary the Virgin at Hillington in Sandringham last week
In an interview with BBC Newsnight the Duke of York claimed he does not remember meeting Ms Roberts.
He said he was at a Pizza Express in Woking, Surrey, the night he is accused of going to Tramp nightclub with the then-teenager.
Epstein was found hanged in his Manhattan jail cell last August awaiting trial for sex trafficking charges.
He previously received an 18-month prison sentence in Florida in 2008 on charges of soliciting a minor for prostitution.
Despite the conviction, Prince Andrew continued to associate with Epstein and was pictured staying with him at his mansion in Manhattan in 2010.
Buckingham Palace declined to comment when asked about the meeting possible meeting between the Queen and the Prince of Wales.