Juventus star denies rape allegation
W ith eight Serie A wins in a row before the international break and victory in their opening three games of the Champions League group stage, things have been going extremely well on the pitch for Juventus and their iconic summer signing from Real Madrid.
Away from the game, however, the Portuguese forward has been accused by a 34-year-old US citizen, Kathryn Mayorga, of raping her in a Las Vegas hotel in June 2009, with lawyers filing a lawsuit seeking unspecified damages of at least $200,000.
The lawsuit accuses Ronaldo or those working for him of conspiracy, defamation, abusing a vulnerable person, battery, infliction of emotional distress, coercion and fraud, racketeering and conspiracy, breach of contract, abuse of process and negligence for allowing details of a previous confidential settlement between the player and Ms Mayorga to become public.
The Juve star maintains the sex was consensual and denies all allegations, calling rape “an abominable crime that goes against everything I am and believe in”, adding: “Keen as I may be to clear my name, I refuse to feed the media spectacle created by people seeking to promote themselves at my expense.”
Ms Mayorga made her allegations in an interview with German magazine Der
Spiegel, claiming Ronaldo had invited her to his hotel and then forced her to have sex with him. She arrived at a private settlement in 2009, allegedly receiving $375,000 in exchange for a non-
disclosure agreement which she claims has since been broken.
In a document filed to the District Court in Clark County, Nevada on September 27 by law firm Stovall & Associates on behalf of Ms Mayorga, her lawyers argue that the 2009 settlement is “void or voidable on the basis of incompetency, undue influence, coercion and/or fraud”. In other words, her lawyers claim that due to the trauma of the initial sexual assault and due to a “subsequent threat to publicly and falsely accuse her of extortion and false accusations”, Ms Mayorga “was incompetent and lacked the mental capacity to participate in negotiations”.
She says she has come forward now, nine years later, for three reasons: a belief that she can find justice with a new lawsuit, because she has been emboldened by the #MeToo movement, and in the hope that the case could cause other accusers to come forward.
The German magazine says it has “no reason” to doubt the authenticity of key documents used in its story, which centres on a questionnaire that it says came from Ronaldo’s lawyers.
A statement from Ronaldo’s lawyer, Peter Christiansen, says the documents were “pure inventions” and the result of a 2015 cyber attack, during which “electronic data was stolen” from “dozens of entities (including law firms) in different parts of Europe”, adding: “This hacker tried to sell such information, and a media outlet irresponsibly ended up publishing some of the stolen documents, significant parts of which were altered and/or completely fabricated.”
“Keen as I may be to clear my name, I refuse to feed the media spectacle created by people seeking to promote themselves at my expense”
Statement...Juve’s Portuguese star