[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
It looks like Cristiano Ronaldo will not have to head to trial for those 2009 sexual assault allegations against him – well, for now.
As we previously reported, Kathryn Mayorga claimed she went to a nightclub called Rain in the Palms Hotel on June 13, 2009, where she met the soccer star who invited her back to his penthouse suite with a group of people. At one point in the night, she said Cristiano allegedly stormed into the bathroom while she was in there and then “exposed his erect penis and asked the plaintiff to perform fellatio.” When she refused and tried to leave, he then allegedly pulled her “onto a bed and attempted to engage in sexual intercourse” and sodomized her.
He has continuously denied the allegations over the years. And although Cristiano paid her $375,000 in hush money in exchange for not filing any criminal charges, Kathryn later filed a lawsuit in Nevada’s Clark County District Court in 2018 seeking to void the original agreement and receive an additional $200,000 in damages. The suit claimed that he or one of his associates violated the confidentiality agreement before the German newspaper Der Speigel published an article on the allegations based on documents leaked by the website Football Leaks.
Now, US District Judge Jennifer Dorsey of Las Vegas tossed out the rape lawsuit on Friday against the 37-year-old athlete. Why is that? According to a 42-page ruling obtained by People, the judge slammed the actions of his accuser’s attorney Leslie Mark Stovall, claiming stolen and leaked documents detailing Cristiano’s attorney-client conversations were used in the case. Therefore, she determined that the case was tainted for good:
“Stovall’s repeated use of stolen, privileged documents to prosecute this case has every indicia of bad-faith conduct. And because the record shows that he and Mayorga have extensively reviewed these documents and used them to fashion the very basis of Mayorga’s claims. Simply disqualifying Stovall will not purge the prejudice from their misuse.”
When Leslie started using the leaked docs in his findings, the court “found that defendant Cristiano Ronaldo had not waived privilege and struck them.” Dorsey added:
“But Stovall remained undeterred, and when the defense learned that he planned to use some of those documents in depositions and believed he had even more than he’d disclosed, they filed a motion for case-terminating sanctions.”
Following the dismissal, Cristiano’s attorney Peter S. Christiansen told People in a statement that they are “pleased with the federal court’s careful consideration of the issues and decision to dismiss this case.” He continued:
“Since the Plaintiff first filed suit in 2018, we have maintained the action was brought in bad faith. The outright dismissal of Plaintiff’s case should give all who follow this matter renewed confidence in the judicial process in this country while dissuading those who seek to undermine it.”
While Kathryn cannot refile the lawsuit at this time, she is able to appeal the judge’s decision to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco if she wants. It is unclear if she plans to do so or not, so we’ll have to wait and see.
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[Image via MEGA/WENN]