Britain’s Prince Andrew has said that during the “limited time” he spent with financier Jeffrey Epstein, he never saw, witnessed, or suspected “any behavior of the sort that subsequently led to his arrest and conviction.”
In a statement released on Saturday, the Duke of York added: “I deplore the exploitation of any human being and would not condone, participate in, or encourage any such behavior” and reiterated that “it was a mistake and an error to see him after his release in 2010.”
Speaking about Epstein, the Duke of York said: “His suicide has left many unanswered questions and I acknowledge and sympathise with everyone who has been affected and wants some form of closure.”
He continued, “This is a difficult time for everyone involved and I am at a loss to be able to understand or explain Mr. Epstein’s lifestyle.”
The Duke of York also released a statement Monday after footage emerged last weekend that claimed to show the royal inside the convicted pedophile’s New York mansion in 2010 – two years after Epstein first pleaded guilty to sex crimes.
In the footage obtained by The Mail On Sunday, the British paper says Prince Andrew can be seen at the door of the disgraced hedge fund manager’s Manhattan home, waving goodbye to a young woman leaving the property.
CNN could not independently verify the authenticity of the video or when it was shot. When CNN contacted Buckingham Palace for comment, officials declined to answer CNN’s specific questions about the video.
Instead, the Palace referred CNN to the statement it released Monday, which said: “The Duke of York has been appalled by the recent reports of Jeffrey Epstein’s alleged crimes. His Royal Highness deplores the exploitation of any human being and the suggestion he would condone, participate in or encourage any such behavior is abhorrent.”
CNN’s Max Foster and Lauren Said-Moorhouse contributed to this report.