Prince Andrew: The friends that played together, now paying together

Jeffrey Epstein Prince Andrew and Ghislaine Maxwell
Jeffrey Epstein, Prince Andrew and Ghilsaine Maxwell Credit: AP/PA

How dark a shadow Jeffrey Epstein casts - two-and-a-half years after his death, the convicted paedophile and those in his orbit are still keeping New York’s courts busy.Last month Ghislaine Maxwell. Now Prince Andrew.

She’s had her day in court, he is no doubt desperately hoping to avoid his.The friends who played together are paying together.

The extravagance and hedonism of luxury lifestyles lived 30 years ago being relived beneath the harsh strip lights and scrutiny of New York’s justice system.

Ms Giuffre (right) is suing Prince Andrew for allegedly sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager. Credit: AP

The sexual assault case against Prince Andrew is in the civil court, a step down from the criminal court, but with a different burden of proof and therefore a different jeopardy.

Beyond reasonable doubt is not the barometer here. A jury only has to decide on the balance of probability.

Did it probably happen? Rather than did it definitely happen and is the evidence there to be absolutely sure?

What does this mean for Prince Andrew and royal family? Royal Editor Chris Ship breaks it down

In the weeks ahead, Prince Andrew will face Virginia Giuffre's lawyer David Boies in court, a man known for the forensic intensity of his questioning.Every word he says will be on camera, on oath and under greater scrutiny than he has ever experienced before.

The prince will need to pick his words very carefully.