Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Ronaldo rebuffs ‘fake’ rape claim as police reopen probe

Ronaldo rebuffs ‘fake’ rape claim as police reopen probe

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo is facing allegations of rape by a former model who accuses the Portuguese superstar of attacking her in his Las Vegas hotel penthouse suite in 2009. Isabella BONOTTO/AFP

Ronaldo rebuffs ‘fake’ rape claim as police reopen probe

Police on Monday said they had reopened an investigation into a rape accusation made by a former model who says football star Cristiano Ronaldo attacked her in his Las Vegas hotel penthouse suite in 2009.

Ronaldo, who now plays for Juventus in Italy’s Serie A, rejected the charges as “fake news” during a live chat on Instagram.

“What they said today, fake – fake news,” the 33-year-old star of the Portuguese national team said in a post that was later deleted.

Kathryn Mayorga, 34, of Las Vegas, accused Ronaldo, in a 32-page complaint filed last month with a district court in Nevada, of raping her on June 13, 2009.

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department confirmed in a statement that didn’t name the superstar it had responded to a call of a sexual assault on that date.

“At the time the report was taken, the victim did not provide detectives with the location of the incident or suspect description. A medical exam was conducted,” it said.

“As of September 2018, the case has been reopened and our detectives are following up on information being provided by the victim.”

Mayorga alleges in the lawsuit that she was pressured into signing a nondisclosure agreement to keep the alleged rape secret and is seeking no less than $200,000 in penalties and damages.

The complaint was first reported by the German magazine Der Spiegel. Lawyers for Ronaldo have reportedly threatened to sue the magazine over the story.

In the suit, Mayorga said she met Ronaldo, who was then 24 years old, on the evening of June 12, 2009 at the Rain Nightclub in the Palms Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

It said she accepted an invitation to join Ronaldo and others in his penthouse suite to “enjoy the view of the Las Vegas strip”.

She was invited to join guests in a hot tub but she declined because she did not have a bathing suit, the complaint said. Ronaldo offered her clothing and then followed her into a bathroom where she was going to change clothes, it said.

‘No, no, no’

After she refused his demand to perform oral sex and said she wanted to leave, Ronaldo pulled her into a bedroom and anally raped her while she screamed “no, no, no,” the complaint said.

“When Cristiano Ronaldo completed the sexual assault of the plaintiff, he allowed her to leave the bedroom stating he was sorry, he was usually a gentleman,” it said.

The lawsuit said Mayorga reported the alleged assault to the Las Vegas police the same day and underwent an examination at a local hospital.

It said the assault had left her with “severe emotional and bodily injuries including but not limited to anal contusions, posttraumatic stress disorder and major depression”.

She developed an alcohol problem and was suicidal, according to court documents.

Under pressure from Ronaldo’s “fixers”, Mayorga settled the case “in exchange for a payment of $375,000 and non-disclosure of the sexual assault”, the lawsuit said.

It claimed the agreement should be voided because she was “incompetent and lacked the mental capacity to participate in negotiations and settlement of her claims due to the injuries suffered during the initial sexual assault”.

The suit also called for the agreement to be dismissed because it amounted to concealment of a crime for which there is no statute of limitations. The unidentified “fixers” were named as co-defendants in the lawsuit, which also accuses the Juventus forward of violating the 2010 nondisclosure agreement.

In an interview with Der Spiegel, Mayorga, who has a degree in journalism from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, said she was inspired to come forward in part by the #MeToo movement that has exposed the sexual abuse of women by powerful men.

Ronaldo is a five-time winner of Fifa’s men’s player of the year award.

The Portuguese striker, who is a married father of four, left Real Madrid this year to join Juventus for €100 million ($117 million).

MOST VIEWED

  • Schools to be reopened in ‘three stages’

    With guidance from Prime Minister Hun Sen, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, is in the process of reopening schools in three stages. But no timeline has been set, ministry spokesperson Ros Soveacha said on Thursday. Soveacha said the first stage will be to

  • Thai border crossings eased

    The Cambodian Embassy in Thailand said in an announcement on Wednesday that Thailand’s government has allowed certain passengers from several countries to enter its borders. The visitors must go back to their country immediately after their duties in Thailand are fulfilled, the embassy said.

  • Gov’t says tourism recovers slightly despite pandemic

    The Ministry of Tourism and the Phnom Penh municipal administration have recognised 33 tourism businesses in the capital which have consistently implemented safety measures for tourists and adhered to the code of conduct issued by the ministry. Recently, the ministry announced that tourism businesses had to

  • Mull ASEAN border opening, PM urges

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has requested that ASEAN launch a scenario for gradually reopening cross-border travel and trade between countries in the region. He said ASEAN has had more success combating Covid-19 compared to other regions. The prime minister’s request was made at the

  • Ministry reports 11 new Covid-19 cases, reiterates vigilance

    Minister of Health Mam Bun Heng has urged people to continue practising virus prevention techniques after 11 people tested positive for Covid-19 within two days after arriving in the Kingdom. Speaking on Sunday, Bun Heng stressed the importance of washing hands, wearing masks or scarves when

  • Nine on Indonesia flight Covid-19 positive

    The Ministry of Health on Saturday confirmed nine more imported cases of Covid-19. The nine ‒ eight Cambodians and one Indonesian, aged 22 to 26 ‒ arrived in Cambodia on Thursday via a direct flight from Indonesia and are receiving treatment at the Khmer-Soviet Friendship Hostipal in Phnom Penh.

  • Kingdom’s financial sector healthy

    Cambodia's financial sector remains on a sustainable growth path despite the Covid-19 pandemic squeezing crucial industries, National Bank of Cambodia (NBC) governor Chea Chanto said. Tourism, garments and footwear have borne the brunt of the Covid-19 impact, he said, whereas the financial and agriculture sectors

  • Vietnam told to remove border tents

    Kandal provincial governor Kong Sophoan has ordered local authorities to prohibit the construction of buildings in areas bordering Cambodia and to report any irregularities immediately. Recently, Vietnamese officials removed another seven tents from the border area with Cambodia. His remarks were made on Wednesday afternoon

  • Migrant workers set to return from Malaysia

    The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation confirmed on Thursday that 158 Cambodian students and migrant workers will fly home from Malaysia on Friday morning. This is the second flight to bring Cambodians home from Malaysia. A ministry notice said Malaysia Airlines Flight MH754 will

  • Cambodia to remain neutral on ASEAN-China territorial dispute

    Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Prak Sokhonn told an informal meeting of ASEAN foreign ministers on Wednesday that Cambodia will stay neutral on the South China Sea. He appealed to all stakeholders to continue fostering a conducive environment that contributes to the end