|Prince Andrew with Virginia Roberts, then 17 - image REX/Shutterstock|
Police records that could make or break Prince Andrew’s alibi for the night he is alleged to have had sex with a sex-trafficked teenager have been destroyed.
Scotland Yard made the admission to a former Royal protection officer who told The Mail on Sunday he believed Andrew may have returned to Buckingham Palace in the early hours of March 11, 2001.
Virginia Roberts, then 17, claims she was coerced by paedophile Jeffrey Epstein into having sex with the Prince on the night of March 10 at the Belgravia home of Ghislaine Maxwell. In his infamous Newsnight interview last November, the Duke of York insisted he had spent that night at Sunninghill Park, Berkshire, with his children, having earlier dropped off Princess Beatrice at a Pizza Express in Woking, Surrey, for a party.
Earlier this year the former Royal guard told this newspaper that he recalled making a complaint to his boss about allegedly abusive conduct by Andrew when he arrived at the Palace in a car driven by his personal protection officer.
To confirm his account, the ex-officer – who had a 23-year career with the police – asked for access to his shift roster at Buckingham Palace and other documents. Last week, 149 days after making the request, he finally received a reply from a caseworker at the Met’s Information Rights Unit in Sidcup, Kent. An email said: ‘I conducted a number of searches. However the Retention and Disposal Policy states that Duty Records and Annual Leave records are only held for 2 years. Therefore, there is no information the Commissioner is required to supply you.’
Last night, the former Royal guard said: ‘I am very disappointed. Why on earth did it take nearly five months to respond with such a non-informative answer? I’m also surprised to discover that any records regarding the Royal family and their police protection are destroyed, much less after just two years.’ The disclosure raises the possibility that other documents, including Royal protection officer logs, which would confirm where the Prince was at the times in question, have also been destroyed.
The Met declined to tell the MoS what searches had been conducted or the disposal policy for Royalty Protection department material. Prince Andrew’s representatives declined to comment.
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