Norway’s Crown Princess Mette-Marit apologises for meeting Jeffrey Epstein after his 2008 conviction

The Crown Princess of Norway has apologised for meeting with paedophile Jeffrey Epstein after his conviction in the US. 

Princess Mette-Marit met with the disgraced financier several times between 2011 and 2013, following an introduction by mutual acquaintances.

The meetings took place after Epstein was convicted of sex offences in 2008, Norwegian newspaper Dagens Næringsliv reports.

Epstein was found hanged in his Manhatten jail cell in August this year awaiting a trial in the US on federal charges of sex trafficking. 

Meetings between Epstein and the crown princess occurred in social settings, mostly in the US, with one instance of the pair meeting in Norway, according to local media.

Today the Crown Princess issued an apology for having met the billionaire, who has also dragged fellow royal, Britain’s Prince Andrew, into controversy over their friendship. 

Norway's Crown Princess Mette-Marit (centre right) with husbnd Crown Prince Haakon and Prince Sverre Magnus (left), and Marius Borg Hoiby (far right) on the confirmation of Princess Ingrid Alexandra (front) in the Palace Chapel in Oslo in August

Norway's Crown Princess Mette-Marit (centre right) with husbnd Crown Prince Haakon and Prince Sverre Magnus (left), and Marius Borg Hoiby (far right) on the confirmation of Princess Ingrid Alexandra (front) in the Palace Chapel in Oslo in August

Norway’s Crown Princess Mette-Marit (centre right) with husbnd Crown Prince Haakon and Prince Sverre Magnus (left), and Marius Borg Hoiby (far right) on the confirmation of Princess Ingrid Alexandra (front) in the Palace Chapel in Oslo in August 

Andrew’s meetings with Epstein and his stays at the billionaire’s homes in the US caused charities and businesses to distance themselves from him in the wake of his interview with BBC Newsnight last month.

In a statement issued today following pressure from the DN newspaper, a Norwegian palace spokesman said the crown princess was not aware of the seriousness of Epstein’s crimes.

It said: ‘I never would have associated with Mr. Epstein if I had been aware of the seriousness of the crimes he committed. I should have investigated his past more thoroughly, and I am sorry that I didn’t.’

In 2008 Epstein admitted and was convicted in Florida of procuring an under-age girl for prostitution and he served 13 months in prison.

Epstein donated large amounts of money to the International Peace Institute in New York that is run by former Norwegian diplomat Terje Rod-Larsen, reports in the Norwegian media revealed.

Princess Mette-Marit met with Epstein in the Norwegian capital, but the palace would not disclose which of the financier’s homes in Florida, New York or Paris she visited. 

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