Socialite Victoria Hervey has suggested she was “used as bait” by Ghislaine Maxwell to “find however many girls were needed” to entertain Jeffrey Epstein’s friends.
Ms Hervey’s comment is made in an ITV documentary being screened on Tuesday, and in a separate interview, for ITV’s Lorraine, she described Maxwell as a “victim” who has become a “scapegoat” as “there is no-one else to blame”.
Maxwell, Epstein’s former girlfriend and a friend of the Duke of York, was convicted on December 29th of procuring teenage girls for Epstein to abuse and will be sentenced this summer.
Epstein was found dead in his cell at a federal jail in Manhattan in August 2019 while he awaited trial on sex trafficking charges. The death was ruled a suicide.
Ms Hervey, who would socialise with Maxwell, Epstein and the duke in the early 2000s, told the documentary Ghislaine, Prince Andrew And The Paedophile: “Jeffrey was really the frontman and Ghislaine was the accomplice. You know, it was kind of like a Batman and Robin, and they were a double act. I don’t think Jeffrey could have done any of it without Ghislaine.”
She added: “I think he just kind of sat – sat back and sort of waited for her to sort of go fishing and go, you know, find however many girls were needed, you know, to entertain his friends.
“I think I was pretty much used as bait, you know, looking back at it.
“You know, I was like, really, young and naive and, you know, she’s entertaining these, you know, big businessmen.
“So yeah, I didn’t realise it of course at the time, but looking back, I mean anyone that was like, my age or a model…”
Ms Hervey was a staple in the diary columns of newspapers and magazines at the time and was dubbed an “It Girl” while working as a model.
During her interview with Lorraine, Ms Hervey said about Maxwell: “She was a victim that then became the accomplice as her role changed in that relationship when they were no longer together. She kind of switched sides I suppose, one would say. I do see her as a victim as well.”
Lady Victoria went on to say: “I mean she unfortunately is a scapegoat right now because there is no-one else to blame. So unfortunately for her, she is being taken down for what he’s done as well which, you know, some might argue is not, you know, quite as fair as it could be.”
Andrew is facing a civil sexual assault lawsuit from a woman who alleges she was trafficked to have sex with him by Epstein.
The duke, who denies the allegation, was last week stripped of his honorary military roles and royal patronages after losing a legal bid to have the case thrown out.
Ghislaine, Prince Andrew And The Paedophile will be broadcast on ITV at 9pm on Tuesday.