Cristiano Ronaldo is being sued by a Nevada woman who claims he raped her in a Las Vegas hotel in 2009 and then dispatched a team of "fixers" to obstruct the criminal investigation and trick her into keeping quiet for $375,000.
The lawsuit says Kathryn Mayorga, 34, asked police last month to reopen the criminal case with Las Vegas police confirming on Monday they have reopened a sexual assault case from 2009 that corresponds with the date of Ms Mayorga’s allegation.
The suit accuses Ronaldo or those working for him of battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, coercion and fraud, abuse of a vulnerable person, racketeering and civil conspiracy, defamation, abuse of process, breach of contract, and negligence for allowing details of the confidential settlement to leak out.
It asks for general damages, special damages, punitive damages and special relief, each in excess of $50,000, along with interest, attorney fees and court costs.
Ronaldo's lawyers did not immediately respond when contacted but after a report on the case in Der Spiegel last week, Christian Schertz threatened to sue the German magazine: "It violates the personal rights of our client Cristiano Ronaldo in an exceptionally serious way."
Ronaldo appeared to deny the allegations in an Instagram video posted hours later.
"Fake. Fake news," said the five-time Ballon d'Or winner. "You want to promote by my name. It's normal. They want to be famous, to say my name. But it is part of the job. I am a happy man and all good."
Ms Mayorga's lawyers did not immediately respond when contacted.
The lawsuit claims that Ms Mayorga, who was then 24, went with a friend to the Rain nightclub at the Palms Hotel and Casino on the night of June 12, 2009, and met Ronaldo there. It says he invited a group of people up to his suite "to enjoy the view of the Las Vegas strip" and then into the hot tub. According to the suit, he then barged in on her as she was changing, exposed himself and asked her to perform a sex act.
When she refused, the lawsuit claims, he raped her.
According to the lawsuit, and confirmed by a police spokesman, Ms Mayorga reported the attack to police the same day. The spokesman said she also asked for a "sexual assault test".
Ms Mayorga refused to tell police where the assault took place or assist with identifying a suspect other than to say he was a European football player, the spokesman added.
"As of now this is an ongoing investigation and no further details are being released at this time," the spokesman added.
The lawsuit claims that Ms Mayorga's family arranged for a lawyer "who only had several years of legal experience." Negotiations left her with "intrusive thoughts, an increased sense of extreme anxiety and fearfulness, complete helplessness and passivity," the lawsuit says.
"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," the lawsuit says.
Additional reporting by the Associated Press
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