Prince Andrew was reportedly “ordered” not to attend the main Christmas services with the rest of the royal family over the scandal stemming from his friendship with deceased pedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
The BBC’s royal correspondent Nicholas Witchell pointed out “if he had attended [the main service] a lot of the coverage would have been around him. He has become… something of an embarrassment currently to the Royal Family.”
Prince Andrew reportedly attended an earlier service than the rest of the family at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham.
BBC reports that he “kept a low profile” during the earlier event.
“While most of the family arrived in front of crowds lining the roads, Andrew, accompanied by his brother, arrived earlier at the church and used a different entrance,” BBC reports.
His daughters, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, attended the main service at 11 a.m.
The royal is accused of raping then 17-year-old Virginia Roberts Giuffre. He also visited Epstein’s Manhattan home 18 months after the financier completed a prison sentence for soliciting a minor for prostitution. In a disasterous interview with the BBC, Prince Andrew claimed he couldn’t have raped Giuffre on that night in 2001 because he was eating pizza.
Prince Andrew stepped back from his duties as a royal following the shocking and disastrous interview.
“It has become clear to me over the last few days that the circumstances relating to my former association with Jeffrey Epstein has become a major disruption to my family’s work,” a statement from Andrew read. “Therefore, I have asked Her Majesty if I may step back from public duties for the foreseeable future, and she has given her permission.”