Posted on: June 3, 2021, 04:36h.
Last updated on: June 3, 2021, 04:55h.
Soccer superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is asking a federal judge in Las Vegas to dismiss a lawsuit by a Nevada woman. She claims the Portuguese national raped her at the Palms Casino Resort in 2009.
Lawyers for Ronaldo also want Mayorga’s lawyer, Leslie Stovall, to be sanctioned for handling stolen documents. These were confidential files lifted from the athlete’s legal team by an unidentified cyberhacker working for the “Football Leaks” website.
The Ronaldo camp contends these documents have been falsified.
“Stovall … not only used those documents as exhibits to public filings in this case, but also as support for his request that the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department reopen a decade-old investigation to prosecute [Ronaldo],” claims the filing.
“No sanction less than dismissal will suffice,” it continues. “At a minimum, Stovall must be disqualified from acting as counsel in this matter.”
Kathryn Mayorga reported her alleged rape to Las Vegas Metro Police on July 13, 2009, the day after she says it took place. But fearing negative publicity, she declined to name the perpetrator, other than describing a “European soccer player.” She submitted DNA and underwent a medical exam.
Police reopened the case in 2018 after the new lawsuit surfaced. But it was dropped in early 2021. The allegations could not “be proven beyond a reasonable doubt,” in the words of the Clark County District Attorney’s Office.
Ronaldo does not deny meeting Mayorga at the Palms but claims the sex that occurred in the resort’s penthouse suite was consensual.
Mayorga signed a non-disclosure agreement in 2010, agreeing to drop her allegations against the athlete in return for $375,000. But she sued in 2018, arguing she was coerced into signing the agreement by Ronaldo’s “legal fixers” at a time when she says she was “mentally incapacitated.”
The psychological trauma of the sexual assault, the fear of public humiliation and retaliation, and the reiteration of those fears by law enforcement and medical providers left plaintiff terrified and unable to act or advocate for herself,” according to her lawyers.
They say Mayorga believed she was being compensated for her loss, whereas, in fact, the settlement was designed to derail a police investigation into a criminal act.
The “stolen and falsified” document in question was passed to German news magazine Der Spiegel in October 2018 by the hacktivist Football Leaks website. The document’s publication appeared to be the catalyst for Mayorga to sue Ronaldo.
It purports to be an “information-gathering questionnaire” sent to Ronaldo by his legal team shortly after the alleged incident. In it, a person alleged to be Ronaldo, but referred to in the documents as “X,” appears to admit he engaged in non-consensual sex with Mayorga.
Some details of X’s description of the incident appear to match the account Mayorga initially gave to Las Vegas police, including that he “entered her from behind,” that she repeatedly shouted “no,” and that he apologized to her afterwards.
Ronaldo has described the claims as “fake news.”