Andrew was “warned not to do a disastrous Newsnight interview” by a libel lawyer. UK News

libel attorney

Paul Tweed warned the Duke against speaking to the BBC ahead of his Newsnight interview (Image: BBC2)

A libel lawyer “urged the Duke of York not to speak to the BBC ahead of his disastrous Newsnight interview,” it was revealed.

Paul Tweed said he warned then-Royal House chief of staff Amanda Thirsk that the interview was a “bad idea” two days before Andrew sat down with Emily Maitlis in November 2019.

Mr Tweed said Ms Thirsk then “abruptly” hung up the phone.

The lawyer told Channel 4’s Andrew – The Problem Prince he also wanted to know why nobody stopped the interview.

** HARRISON/CAMERA PRESS DIRECTORY MUST ** . Duke of York, first opened up about his connections to Jeffrey Epstein in an interview with BBC Newsnight's Emily Maitlis. / PLEASE LIST MARK HARRISON

The Duke opened up about his relationship with Epstein in the sit-down chat (Image: MARK HARRISON)

Prince Andrew and the Epstein Scandal: The Newsnight Interview

The decision to speak was ‘rash’, according to lawyer (Image: BBC 2)

‘In the back of my mind I was like, ‘Somebody’s going to stop this’… Well, what are you doing?’ he said.

Mr Tweed said his appearance in the two-part documentary was made “with the knowledge and consent of the family”.

He told Channel 4 that Andrew’s association with Epstein was “completely imprudent, completely inappropriate” – adding that he was “very naive”.

Commenting on the exchange with Ms Thirsk, Mr Tweed said: “Amanda called me… She just said, ‘I’m just letting you know that the Duke has decided to do the Newsnight interview.’

‘ I said, ‘Is he crazy? No way, no, no, no. That’s a bad idea. You shouldn’t do it.’

“Amanda just said, ‘Look Paul, I have to go. I’ll call you later.’

“The phone hung up abruptly and that was it.”

Mr Tweed said the interview’s impact on Andrew and his family was “horrific” but believed there was a way back into public life for him.

“What is the mechanism to deal with this?” he told the documentary.

‘I don’t know. It’s a terribly difficult situation, terribly. The actual fact of it, the ramifications of it.

“I’ve always been surprised when you think it’s all over, it’s a hopeless situation – something happened.

“And you can turn it around because facts come out or there are external developments that can sometimes play a role. I would never say never anyway.’

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Justin Scaccy

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