A NEW witness claims she saw Prince Andrew with accuser Virginia Giuffre at a nightclub — contradicting his insistence he was not there. Shukri Walker said: “I remember him dancing and chatting with the young girl.”
Teenage Jeffrey Epstein victim Virginia says she was forced to have sex with Andrew after they left Tramp in Mayfair in March 2001.
Andrew denies it and claims he was not even in Tramp on that evening. He says he remembers the date well because he took daughter Beatrice to a Pizza Express in Woking, Surrey.
But Shukri has no doubts it was the Prince she saw dancing with teenage sex slave Virginia Giuffre at a nightclub — because she said sorry to him after standing on his foot. Shukri said she turned to apologise after her mishap on the dance floor at Tramp and found herself face-to-face with the Prince. She recalled: “He was smiling. He said, ‘No problem’.”
Shukri’s account is another blow to the beleaguered royal, who has come under intense scrutiny since 58-year-old Maxwell was arrested last month for conspiring with Epstein to sex traffick women.
Shukri today said she decided to speak out after watching Andrew’s denial during his now infamous Newsnight interview.
She contacted US lawyer Lisa Bloom, who represents a number of Epstein’s victims. Ms Bloom passed the information on to the FBI.
Shukri said: “When I watched the BBC interview and saw Prince Andrew deny knowing Virginia, saying he has no recollection of that night I had to come forward. Because I was there and I do have a recollection of it.”
Shukri said that she and a male friend had been dancing in the club while Andrew was among a group sitting in a corner.
She added: “I can remember exactly where they were sitting. They had one of those coolers with ice and a bottle in. In fact probably two of those. “You could tell they were getting special treatment.
“The man I was with went over there and started talking to them and then came back.
“Then at some point I was dancing with him and stood on the feet of one of the men sitting in the corner and I said, ‘I’m sorry’.
“And he was smiling. He said, ‘No problem’. My companion said that the man who I stood on was actually Prince Andrew.
“I’d never seen a Prince in my life before. I just stood and looked at this man, thinking, ‘Oh my goodness. It’s a real Prince.’
“He was smiling a lot, most of the night.
“He looked like he was having a great time. And he was with this young girl who was close to my own age, perhaps even a bit younger than me.
“They were not that alone. They were with the woman who has just been arrested, Ghislaine Maxwell, and Epstein.
“I will never forget the night because I was told this is a real Prince.
“That’s the moment that stood out for me. I don’t think I would have remembered otherwise.”
Shukri recalled Virginia had an “awkward expression” on her face.
She added: “I do remember the little girl perhaps was a little bit drunk or just had a weird expression, an awkward expression. But she wasn’t smiling, it was the opposite of smiles.”
In Virginia’s account of the night of March 10, 2001, Andrew was “sweating profusely” as they danced.
Andrew told Newsnight that was impossible as he has a medical condition which means he does not sweat.
Shukri says she cannot be sure if Andrew was sweating — but claims she did see him wipe his face.
She said: “He was using the back of his hand. I don’t know with all honesty if he was wiping it because he was sweating or just touching it.
“But he wiped at his forehead with the back of his hand when he was dancing several times.
“I remember he was dancing with the young girl and chatting with her throughout the night.”
Virginia, now 36, says she was forced to have sex with Andrew at Maxwell’s London house. She says a picture of Andrew with his arm around her was taken there on the same night. Andrew has said he has no recollection of meeting Virginia and suggested the photo may have been faked.
Maxwell is currently in jail in New York awaiting trial. Billionaire financier Epstein, a friend of Andrew’s, killed himself in prison a year ago while facing similar charges.
Somalian Shukri said she was even more determined to come forward because she was a sex trafficking victim herself. She was a teenage refugee from her war-torn homeland when she was trafficked from Kenya to Italy and then London.
Ms Bloom believes Shukri to be a credible witness. The lawyer said: “All she wanted was to get her story to the FBI as a witness to help Virginia. “So she wasn’t seeking any money from anyone. She wasn’t looking to bring a lawsuit.” The FBI decided it did not need Shukri’s testimony.
Ms Bloom said: “They said, ‘We have the story, thank you. And we don’t need to bother her’.”
The lawyer said a second woman had been in touch claiming to have seen Andrew and Virginia together in the club on that evening.
She said she had several phone conversations with the witness, who was too frightened to go public. Ms Bloom hopes Shukri’s story will put further pressure on Andrew to speak to US prosecutors. She said: “Absolutely they should investigate him.
“You know, if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck, it’s probably a duck and this duck spent a lot of time with Epstein, “And Andrew’s story always seemed so shady to me. “He has not released any documents, calendars or journals that would show where he was.”
Andrew was pictured in Tramp on March 13 — three days after it is claimed he was there with Virginia. He was snapped chatting to Fiona Sangster, wife of racing tycoon Robert.
Virginia claims she was groomed by Epstein and Maxwell after being invited to apply for a masseuse job shortly after her 17th birthday.
She has alleged in court documents they made her have sex with Andrew in London, New York and the US Virgin Islands in 2001. Last week more of her allegations were revealed during ongoing hearings related to the trafficking charges against Maxwell.
David Boies, Virginia’s lawyer, told The Sun last night: “The more the evidence comes out, the more confirmation there is that the Epstein survivors are telling the truth, and that the denials and attacks of the Epstein enablers and participants are a smokescreen.”
Buckingham Palace has previously described Virginia’s claims as “false and without any foundation”. It added: “Any suggestion of impropriety with under-age minors” by the Duke of York was “categorically untrue”.
Andrew, 60, has not commented on Shukri’s claims. But a friend said: “It’s interesting to see how many people have razor sharp recollections of events that took place some 20 years ago. “It’s difficult to believe that these events can be remembered with such clarity at this distance.”
Courtesy: The sun