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Civil Lawsuits Against Jeffrey Epstein’s Estate Are Piling Up, And It Could Implicate Some Very Powerful People

(Photo by Joe Schildhorn/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

Anders Hagstrom White House Correspondent
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Jeffrey Epstein may be dead, but his accusers aren’t done with him. Shocking numbers of women who say they were raped or assaulted are suing his estate, and their cases could bring down some of Epstein’s most famous acquaintances.

There were a total of 17 lawsuits against the estate as of December 4, representing 26 women, many of whom allege they were raped as young as 13. Courts are anticipating that more will be piling up.

With nearly 30 women filing lawsuits against the $577 million estate, its lawyers are asking courts to rush their request for a victims compensation fund, which would allow the cases to be handled outside of court. Proceedings in a compensation fund are kept confidential, however, and would help famous figures who are under scrutiny now–like England’s Prince Andrew–to avoid the public eye.

“One of the things that we have tried is to interview Prince Andrew and to try to get what his explanation is,” Lawyer David Boies, who represents five women in lawsuits, told the BBC. “He was a frequent visitor. They ought to submit to an interview. They ought to talk about it.” (RELATED: Here’s What Prince Andrew And Jeffrey Epstein’s Other Partygoers Have Said)

LONDON, ENGLAND – MARCH 07: Prince Andrew, Duke of York leaves the headquarters of Crossrail at Canary Wharf on March 7, 2011 in London, England. Prince Andrew is under increasing pressure after a series of damaging revelations about him surfaced, including criticism over his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

Andrew resigned from all of his royal duties “for the foreseeable future” in November, a move some thought was forced on him by his brother Prince Charles.

Boies has filed to subpoena Andrew in the cases for all five of the women he’s representing. the prince would have to be on U.S. soil for the subpoenas to have an effect, however.

The women in Boies cases claim Andrew witnessed massages given at a number of Epstein’s homes. (RELATED: Nancy Grace Finds It ‘Very Hard To Believe’ That Epstein Killed Himself)

Joining Boies is lawyer Spencer Kuvin, who also represents a number of Epstein’s accusers and questioned the man in the mid-2000s when news of Epstein’s crimes was just getting started. Kuvin has not yet filed any subpoenas.

“Be a man, stand up for what you believe and what you’re saying is the truth and come forward,” Kuvin said on BBC. “If he truly wants to help these victims, then step forward.”

While it is unlikely that Andrew would testify in the cases for each of Epstein’s accusers, the royal family is reportedly “preparing” for him to testify in the still-ongoing criminal investigation related to Epstein.

“There’s a whole network that enabled him and allowed this to happen and it’s time that everyone who was a part of this be held accountable,” said Kimberly Lerner, another attorney for one of Epstein’s accusers, in a Washington Post story.

During a disastrous T.V. interview days before his resignation, Andrew said he would only testify if “push came to shove and the legal advice was to do so.”

While a subpoena from U.S. authorities was called “imminent” when Andrew stepped down from his duties in November, investigators have yet to file one.

Andrew’s role in the case centers on a photo showing himself and Epstein’s alleged madam Ghislaine Maxwell together with then-17-year-old Virginia Giuffre, one of the girls Epstein allegedly forced into sex acts for his famous acquaintances. Giuffre claims she had sex with Andrew multiple times at Epstein’s direction.

Prince Andrew (left) is seen with Virginia Roberts Giuffre (center) and Ghislaine Maxwell (right) in a photograph that the Duke of York has suggested could be fake. (Screenshot Youtube The Telegraph)

Prince Andrew (left) is seen with Virginia Roberts Giuffre (center) and Ghislaine Maxwell (right) in a photograph that the Duke of York has suggested could be fake. (Screenshot Youtube The Telegraph)

“There was a bath and it started there and then it led into the bedroom and it didn’t last very long, the whole entire procedure,” she said of the night in the photograph. “It was disgusting. He wasn’t mean or anything, but he got up and he said thanks and walked out.”

Not all of Epstein’s accusers have focused exclusively on suing his estate, however. Accuser Jennifer Araoz also filed lawsuits against Maxwell and three other women who worked for Epstein.

Maxwell allegedly “participated with and assisted” Epstein’s sex-trafficking ring and also allegedly helped intimidate potential witnesses, according to the lawsuit. The lawsuit is also filed against a secretary, a maid and a “recruiter,” according to the Daily Caller News Foundation. (RELATED: Criminal Charges Expected Against Two Of Jeffrey Epstein’s Prison Guards)

“We intend to pursue justice for our client, Jennifer Araoz, and hold accountable those who enabled Mr. Epstein’s criminal activity,” said Dan Kaiser, Araoz’s lawyer, following Epstein’s suicide. “Regardless of his untimely death, our case will move forward. Jennifer deserves her day in court.”

Epstein’s estate could disappear entirely under the still-growing pile of lawsuits. Lawyer Lisa Bloom, who represents three accusers, has called for the entire $577 million estate to be frozen and distributed to his alleged victims.

None of the cases have reached a settlement with the estate, however, and courts have yet to approve its request for a victims fund.