Prince Andrew: Epstein investigators 'considering options' as duke 'shuts door' on co-operation

Prince Andrew has stopped helping the inquiry into sex abuser Jeffrey Epstein, a US attorney in New York has said.

Geoffrey Berman told reporters: "Contrary to Prince Andrew's very public offer to co-operate with our investigation into Epstein's co-conspirators, an offer that was conveyed via press release, Prince Andrew has now completely shut the door on voluntary co-operation and our office is considering its options."

The Duke of York was a longtime friend of the well-connected financier, who took his own life while awaiting trial on sex trafficking charges in August.

Investigators complained about the duke's failure to co-operate in January - two months after he said he was "willing to help any appropriate law enforcement agency with their investigations if required".

That January statement prompted the prince's lawyers to tell investigators their client would not submit voluntarily to an interview, Mr Berman's spokesman James Margolin said.

Andrew, 60, has been accused of having sex with a 17-year-old woman provided by Epstein, a claim he denies.

In December his accuser, Virginia Roberts-Giuffre, now 35, dismissed Andrew's denial.

He gave up royal duties for the foreseeable future last November following a disastrous Newsnight appearance about his friendship with Epstein, a convicted sex offender.

The prince, who has described his association with the financier as "ill-judged", has not been accused of criminal wrongdoing.

A spokeswoman for Buckingham Palace refused to comment.

Sponsors have deserted the company he founded, Pitch@Palace, which aims to support British entrepreneurs, but which has now removed his pictures from its website.

Last month, councils were told they no longer have to fly flags for the duke's birthday.

The FBI is investigating Epstein's longtime friend British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, who is accused of facilitating the wealthy financier's alleged trafficking of underage girls.

As well as the prince, Epstein's high-profile contacts included US president Donald Trump and former president Bill Clinton.