Lawyers for woman accusing Cristiano Ronaldo of rape moved case to federal court so the footballer can be served papers in Italy, attorney reveals
- Kathryn Mayorga claimed Ronaldo attacked her in Las Vegas penthouse in 2009
- She said the Juventus star’s lawyers paid her £295,000 in return for her silence
- But she went public with the claims last September and filed suit against him
- Mayorga’s lawyers filed a notice of voluntary dismissal in the lawsuit in Nevada
- Confirmed they refiled in federal court as it is easier to sue someone abroad
- Ronaldo’s lawyers previously admitted he signed a non-disclosure agreement but said the reasons have been distorted. Ronaldo has always denied the claims
Cristiano Ronaldo’s rape accuser dropped charges against the footballer in a Nevada court in order to refile them in a federal court with the power to serve him a lawsuit in Italy.
The legal team for Kathryn Mayorga, who claims the star attacked her in a penthouse in 2009, filed a notice of voluntary dismissal in Nevada state court last month, reported Bloomberg.
But her lawyer, Larissa Drohobyczer, confirmed that the case has not been dropped but rather moved from a state court to federal one, where it is easier to sue someone who lives abroad.
Ronaldo lives in Turin, where the club he has played for since last year, Juventus, are based.
‘The charges were not dropped,’ she told ESPN. ‘The state case was dismissed by us because we filed the identical claims in federal court due to federal court’s rules on serving foreigners.
‘We basically just switched venues, but the claims remain.’
Kathryn Mayorga, a teacher who claimed in a lawsuit that Cristiano Ronaldo raped her in a Vegas penthouse in 2009 (pictured together that night), withdrew her case in Nevada state court so it can be refiled in a higher court
ESPN reports that Ronaldo’s agency, Gestifute, was unaware that the Nevada case was dropped.
Las Vegas Metro Police Department are also investigating Ronaldo, and have confirmed that the case is still active.
Mayorga, now 34, claimed in September last year that the Juventus and Portugal player attacked her in the penthouse of a Las Vegas hotel almost a decade before.
She said she was paid £295,000 and signed a non-disclosure agreement with Ronaldo’s lawyers at the time, but spoke out last year which led to Las Vegas police reopening their investigation into the athlete.
Ronaldo has vehemently denied the allegations on social media.
Mayorga said she was pursuing a career in modelling when she met Ronaldo in Las Vegas while she was working as a promoter for the Rain nightclub and he was celebrating his record transfer from Manchester United to Real Madrid.
The pair were photographed in the club’s VIP area together and she claimed they swapped numbers, before Ronaldo texted her and invited her to his hotel.
When she arrived the guests, including a friend she names as Jordan, were invited to get into the hot tub but she didn’t have any swimwear.
She claimed Ronaldo offered her a pair of athletic shorts and a t-shirt to wear before showing her to an en-suite bathroom so she could change.
But while she was partially clothed she alleges that Ronaldo burst in, exposed himself, and suggested she perform sex acts on him – which she refused.
The pair kissed but were then interrupted by one of Ronaldo’s friends and she tried to leave, but he dragged her into the bedroom and tried to undress her, she claimed.
Ronaldo (pictured in training this week) had vehemently denied the claims via social media, though his lawyers never filed a response to the suit
Despite repeatedly saying ‘no’ and curling up into a ball with her hands over her privates, she claimed Ronaldo raped her in an ordeal that lasted between five and seven minutes.
Afterwards, she claimed he repeatedly apologised before the pair made their way back to the hot tub.
Mayorga recalls staying at the party for a short time after, though was in a ‘disembodied’ state and had to fend off questions from her friend about whether she was OK.
After leaving, she says she reported the attack to police and submitted to medical exams, though initially refused to give Ronaldo’s name.
In further police interviews she did name the sports star, she claimed, but told officers that she didn’t want the news to be taken public.
While suffering depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts because of the alleged attack, Mayorga claimed she agreed to sign a non-disclosure agreement.
In return for £288,000 – a week’s wage for Ronaldo at the time – Mayorga says she agreed to never speak of the attack again or mention his name, including in therapy.
But after living with years of regret and in the midst of the #MeToo movement, she has decided to speak out, claiming the agreement she signed was not valid because she was not in a fit mental state.
Mayorga claimed the attack happened in a suite in this hotel in Las Vegas in the summer of 2009 after Ronaldo burst into a bathroom where she was changing into a swimsuit
Ronaldo used an Instagram video released shortly after Mayorga went public to deny her claims, calling them ‘fake, fake news’ and adding: ‘I am a happy man and all good.’
He then issued a Tweet which read: ‘I firmly deny the accusations being issued against me.
‘Rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in.
‘Keen as I may be to clear my name, I refuse to feed the media spectacle created by people seeking to promote themselves at my expense,’ he said.
He followed that tweet with a further message, saying that his ‘clear conscience’ will allow him to await the results of an investigation ‘with tranquility’.
Despite Ronaldo’s professed calmness, the allegations had begun to interfere with his playing career.
Juventus’s fixtures during the International Champions Cup this year were scheduled to be played in Asia rather than the United States, over fears Ronaldo would be detained and forced to court if he went there.
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