London (CNN) Prince Andrew was barely mentioned in the course of British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell‘s sex trafficking trial in New York.
But the fact jurors found her guilty on five of six counts related to her role in Jeffrey Epstein’s sexual abuse of minor girls can hardly be good news for the UK royal.
Andrew faces a civil lawsuit filed by Virginia Roberts Giuffre in which she alleges she was trafficked by Jeffrey Epstein and forced to have sex with his friends — including the prince — and that Andrew was aware she was underage (17) in the US. Prince Andrew strongly denies the allegations.
Oral arguments in that case are set for January 4, where attorneys for the 61-year-old prince are expected to argue for the lawsuit’s dismissal.
If his lawyers are unsuccessful, or the case is not settled, the royal could face a trial date between September and December 2022. The long-running allegations facing Andrew have already dramatically tarnished his public standing and he stepped back from royal duties in late 2019.