Cristiano Ronaldo has “firmly denied” an allegation of rape made against him amid the reopening of an investigation from 2009 by US police.
German media outlet Der Spiegel reported on Friday that American woman Kathryn Mayorga had claimed Ronaldo sexually assaulted her in a hotel room nine years ago.
Las Vegas police subsequently reopened an investigation into the case, at the request of Ms Mayorga.
Ronaldo has now released a statement on the matter, after his legal team, per the BBC, said that they would sue Der Spiegel for “illegal” reporting.
“I firmly deny the accusations being issued against me,” the Juventus striker said.
“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.
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.
— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) October 3, 2018
The 33-year-old had previously appeared to comment on the accusations in an Instagram live stream, decrying Ms Mayorga’s claim as “fake news”. The stream is no longer visible on his account.
Ms Mayorga, 34, is reported to have filed a rape report with Las Vegas police after the alleged incident.
She claims to have reached an out-of-court settlement with Ronaldo in 2010 involving a $375,000 (£288,000) payment for agreeing never to go public with the accusations. Her lawyers are now reportedly seeking to declare the non-disclosure agreement void.
The alleged victim’s legal team are set to hold a press conference at 3pm local time in Las Vegas on Wednesday in which reporters will be able to ask questions about the lawsuit being filed against the former Real Madrid and Manchester United player.
Her attorney Larissa Drohobyczer confirmed to Las Vegas Now that Ms Mayorga won’t be attending the press conference and is currently not in the US.
Ronaldo was suspended for Juventus’ 3-0 win over Swiss side Young Boys on Tuesday, after being sent off during his side’s encounter with Valencia.
He was sent off in the Bianconeri’s win over Valencia in a controversial clash with Jeison Murillo.