Sunday 20 October 2019

Ronaldo is left out of Portugal team following rape allegation

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo

Rozina Sabur

Cristiano Ronaldo has been left out of the Portugal national football team's forthcoming matches after he was accused of rape.

Kathryn Mayorga, a 34-year-old former model, has claimed the player -assaulted her in Las Vegas in 2009. The footballer (33) has angrily denied Ms Mayorga's claims.

Portugal's decision to drop its captain from its next two games came after police in Las Vegas announced they were re-opening their investigation.

The player said he is keen to clear his name but added his "clear conscience" allows him to calmly await "the results of any and all investigations".

Ms Mayorga has filed a lawsuit against Ronaldo seeking to void a non-disclosure agreement she alleges she was coerced into signing.

She claims the footballer raped her in a hotel in June 2009 and is seeking more than $200,000 (€174,000) in damages.

The Juventus star has vehemently denied the accusation, saying "rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in".

Las Vegas police reopened the nine-year-old case and are testing clothes Ms Mayorga wore that night in 2009 for DNA, according to a law-enforcement official familiar with the investigation.

Many details could become public as early as next week.

A psychiatric evaluation, her lawyer Leslie Stovall said, showed Ms Mayorga had suffered "post-traumatic stress disorder and major depression", which "rendered her incompetent to participate in negotiations of a non-disclosure agreement".

Meanwhile, Nike has said that it is "deeply concerned by the disturbing allegations" facing the player.

The emailed statement from the American sportswear company said: "We are deeply concerned by the disturbing allegations and will continue to closely monitor the situation."

Nike's response follows a similar statement made by EA Sports, who also sponsor the player.

However, his club Juventus gave him their full backing: "Ronaldo has shown in recent months his great professionalism and dedication, which is appreciated by everyone at Juventus."

Irish Independent

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