Prince Andrew served with legal papers at gates of Royal Lodge in Windsor

ITV News Royal Editor Chris Ship reports on the Duke of York being served with legal paperwork

Prince Andrew has been served at his home in Britain with the legal paperwork for a lawsuit filed against him by a woman who accuses him of having sex with her when she was underage.

The Duke of York was served with the civil suit filed by Virginia Giuffre on August 27,  according to a document filed in a New York court.

The document says the suit was left with a police officer on duty at the gates of the Royal Lodge in Windsor.

Andrew has vehemently denied the allegations in the past and a spokeswoman representing the Duke of York has declined to comment on the latest update.

Ms Giuffre, an alleged victim of convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, claims she was forced to have sex with Andrew in Epstein's New York mansion when she was 17 - under the age of consent in the US. 

Last month, her lawyer told ITV News he believed the duke would end up in court over the lawsuit.

The filing says the way in which the document was left at the gates of the property is “consistent with the provisions for service upon an individual defendant, under Section 6 of the Civil Procedure Rules, as required by the Supreme Court of Judicature in England & Wales”.

It is unclear whether Andrew's laywers will agree that the legal papers have been served on him, as they were not handed to him personally.

Buckingham Palace has refused to comment.

ITV News Royal Editor Chris Ship explains how Prince Andrew is likely to respond with 'his policy of silence'

Ms Giuffre alleges she was trafficked to the duke and sexually abused by him.

On one occasion, she said the prince sexually abused her at Ghislaine Maxwell's home in London when Epstein, Maxwell and Prince Andrew forced her to have sex with the prince.

On another occasion, Prince Andrew allegedly sexually abused Ms Giuffre in Epstein’s New York mansion.

Ms Giuffre said in an interview with BBC Panorama that she was left "horrified and ashamed" after an alleged sexual encounter with Andrew in London in 2001.

She claimed she danced with Andrew in Tramp nightclub, adding he was "the most hideous dancer I've ever seen in my life" and "his sweat was... raining basically everywhere".

Virginia Guiffre said she hopes Prince Andrew comes clean. Credit: AP/PA

During Prince Andrew's car crash interview in November 2019, he told BBC Newsnight he never had sex with Ms Giuffre, saying he can "absolutely and categorically" say "it never happened".

He said he had "no recollection" of ever meeting her and that there were “a number of things that are wrong" about Ms Giuffre’s account, which alleges the encounter occurred in 2001.

Maxwell, 59, has pleaded not guilty to sex trafficking charges in Manhattan federal court, where she faces trial in November.

Epstein, 66, took his own life in a federal jail in Manhattan in August 2019, a month after he was arrested on sex trafficking charges.

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