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Jeffrey Epstein ‘raped woman at 17 while Prince Andrew was in other room’

Prince Andrew was at Jeffrey Epstein’s New York mansion when the disgraced paedophile financier raped a 17-year-old girl, a new lawsuit claims.

Caroline Kaufman, now 26, accused the billionaire of raping her during a ‘modelling interview’ in December 2010. Before the assault she says she was taken to a private area by an ‘older woman’ who asked her to undress and took naked pictures of her.

She now believes this woman was Epstein’s ex-girlfriend and socialite Ghislaine Maxwell, who has been arrested and is facing charges over alleged sexual abuse and exploitation over a number of underage girls. According to the lawsuit, Ms Kaufman was then escorted into a massage room where Epstein was waiting naked on a massage table.

Ms Kaufman says she was introduced to several people at the Manhattan home including Prince Andrew, who was photographed walking around central park with Epstein at the same time, according to the lawsuit.

Ahead of her visit to the $56,000,000 (£50,470,048) mansion she says she was ‘recruited’ when she was 16 at a horse show in New York by Epstein’s ‘close associate’ Susan Hamblin.

The lawsuit adds: ‘Hamblin then told Kaufman that her “boss” could help Kaufman get into the modelling industry. During these conversations, Kaufman made clear to Hamblin that she was only 16 years old at that time.’

Months later she agreed to visit Epstein’s home after repeated calls from Hamblin. After the photoshoot the filing said: ‘Maxwell advised Kaufman that her “boss” wanted to meet her.’

‘Kaufman then put a bikini back on and was escorted by Maxwell into a massage room. Epstein was nude on the massage table as she entered the room.

‘After Maxwell left the room, Epstein got up off the table, grabbed Kaufman and threw her against the massage table. During this encounter, Epstein vaginally and anally raped Kaufman, while saying: ”I know you love it.”

‘Kaufman was screaming for help during this encounter, but no one came to her rescue.’ Upon finishing, Epstein left the room … and [Kaufman] started hyperventilating. She then exited the massage room.’

After the encounter Hamblin is alleged to have given Ms Kaufman $500, telling her: ‘Mr. Epstein is a very powerful man and he knows presidents. If you say anything he will kill you and your family.’

The lawsuit describes how Ms Kaufman suffered ‘extreme distress, humiliation, fear, psychological trauma, loss of dignity and self esteem and invasion of her privacy’ following the attack.

In an interview with The Sun she said: ‘I’ve had to live in darkness… I’ve been severely suicidal. I cut my arms. I was very social and outgoing and then afterwards just very antisocial. I didn’t want to talk to anybody.

‘I had dreams of being a supermodel. And also I had dreams of working with the horses and everything. I turned 18 and I became a stripper.

‘I was working at a club all the time and not thinking I had any meaning left. I didn’t think anyone wanted me for anything besides sex.’

Ms Kaufman’s lawsuit accuses Epstein of using women to ‘manipulate’ his victims by offering money or modelling work. It says the deceased billionaire and his alleged conspirators used ‘financial power, promises, and threats’ to make sure their targets ‘remained compliant with their demands’.

It names the Epstein’s estate and its executors Darren Indyke and Richard Kahn, as defendants.

Ms Kaufman is demanding damages and legal costs from the estate along with a jury trial of the civil case.

Her representative Spencer Kuvin told The Sun: ‘The goal is for all of these women to come forward to be heard and receive a fair and compassionate hearing of their story and just compensation.’

Taking a swipe at Prince Andrew over the criminal case against Epstein’s confidants, the attorney said Prince Andrew is ‘yet to step forward with an answer’ as to why he attended events at Epstein’s homes in New York, Palm Beach and the Virgin Islands – where staff were allegedly hired to ‘maintain and keep secret this network of sexual abuse for years’.

US authorities have urged the Duke of York to speak to them about the case against Ghislaine Maxwell. Andrew claims he has offered to be a witness in the case three times, but prosecutors say he has declined their request to an interview.

A source close to his team told DailyMail.com: ‘The Duke’s team remains bewildered given that we have twice communicated with the DOJ (Department of Justice) in the last month and to-date, we have had no response.’

The Duke has said be became friends with Epstein in 1999 after being introduced through Maxwell.

Their relationship came under scrutiny after Epstein faced a series of sex trafficking charges in July last year before his apparent suicide in a New York jail cell the following month.

In a disastrous interview with the BBC in November, Andrew said he went to Epstein’s home in 2010 to cut ties, after the 66-year-old tycoon had been released from an 18 month jail term for prostituting minors.

But journalist Emily Maitlis pointed out that he then stayed over for a number of days and that he was a guest of honour at a dinner party she said celebrated Epstein’s release.

The Duke also denied allegations by Virginia Roberts Giuffre who claims Maxwell arranged for her to have sex with him at her London townhouse when she was 17 years old in 2001.

He has denied meeting Giuffre, despite a photograph appearing to show him with his arm around her waist at a party that year.

Denying her allegations in a statement last autumn, the palace said: ‘Any suggestion of impropriety with underage minors is categorically untrue.

‘It is emphatically denied that the Duke of York had any form of sexual contact with Virginia Roberts. Any claim to the contrary is false and without foundation.’

Maxwell has denied any involvement in Epstein’s sex crimes.