(NEW YORK POST) — In an explosive new interview with the BBC, Prince Andrew stopped short of calling the infamous, 2001 photo in which he hugs one of Jeffrey Epstein’s “sex slaves” a fake — but he insisted it couldn’t have been him because as a royal, he doesn’t often hug.
At least not in public.
“I have no recollection of that photograph ever having been taken,” Andrew said of the controversial snapshot, which Epstein accuser Virginia Giuffre has said was taken upstairs in the London mansion of Ghislaine Maxwell — a mutual friend of Andrew and Epstein.
The photo was taken on the day Maxwell told the then 17-year-old Giuffre that she was to do for the prince what she did for Epstein.
“It’s a photograph of a photograph of a photograph,” Andrew huffed in his interview with BBC journalist Emily Maitlis — and therefore impossible to confirm as a fake, he said.
“Nobody can prove whether or not that photograph has been doctored,” he said.
But it can’t be real, he reasoned, because “as a member of the royal family” he’s not big on hugging, he said.
“I’m terribly sorry, but if I, as a member of the royal family, and I have a photograph taken — and I take very, very few photographs — I am not one to, um, as it were, hug,” he averred.
“Public displays of affection are not something that, that I do. So. That’s the best explanation I can give you.”
At other points in the interview, Andrew used the unfortunate word, “unbecoming” to describe Epstein’s pedophilia.
He also claimed he had a “peculiar” medical condition that would have prevented him from sweating on the 2001 night Giuffre says he perspired all over her on a London dance floor.