A woman has accused Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the world’s biggest soccer stars, of raping her in a Las Vegas hotel room in 2009.
Kathryn Mayorga says the Portuguese footballer, who now plays for Italian club Juventus, raped her while she repeatedly screamed no, according to a lawsuit filed Friday in Clark County, Nevada.
Las Vegas police said Monday they have reopened a criminal investigation that began in 2009.
After the attack, according to the lawsuit, Ronaldo apologised, “stating he was sorry, he was usually a gentleman.” The lawsuit alleges that Ronaldo told his representatives that “she said ‘no’ and ‘stop’ several times.”
Mayorga’s lawsuit accuses Ronaldo, 33, and his team of taking advantage of her fragile emotional state to coerce her into signing a settlement and nondisclosure agreement in 2009. She claims she received $375,000 in exchange for her silence. Her lawsuit seeks to void the settlement and agreement.
Ronaldo’s representatives denied the rape allegations when German publication Der Spiegel first reported them in 2017. After the outlet broke news of the lawsuit Friday in an interview with Mayorga, Ronaldo’s lawyer called the reporting “blatantly illegal.”
“It violates the personal rights of our client Cristiano Ronaldo in an exceptionally serious way. This is an inadmissible reporting of suspicions in the area of privacy,” lawyer Christian Schertz said in a statement.
Ronaldo appeared to dispute the claims in an Instagram live post on Friday: “What they said today, fake — fake news. They want to promote by my name. It’s normal. They want to be famous — to say my name. Yeah but it’s part of the job. I’m (a) happy man and all, all good.”
Mayorga’s co-counsel, Leslie Stovall, said her complaint and her “psychological” injuries, as well as the physical evidence, the settlement and Ronaldo’s alleged answers to questions about the assault, are not fake news.