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.
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.
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.”
It said she developed an alcohol problem and was suicidal.
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 which 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 married and the father of four, left Real Madrid this year to join Juventus for 100 million euros ($117 million).
Ronaldo won two La Liga titles and four Champions League crowns with Real after joining from Manchester United in 2009 for a then world-record fee of £80 million ($94 million). DM
In other news...
South Africa is in a very real battle. A political fight where terms such as truth and democracy can seem more of a suggestion as opposed to a necessity.
On one side of the battle are those openly willing to undermine the sovereignty of a democratic society, completely disregarding the weight and power of the oaths declared when they took office. If their mission was to decrease society’s trust in government - mission accomplished.
And on the other side are those who believe in the ethos of a country whose constitution was once declared the most progressive in the world. The hope that truth, justice and accountability in politics, business and society is not simply fairy tale dust sprinkled in great electoral speeches; but rather a cause that needs to be intentionally acted upon every day.
However, it would be an offensive oversight not to acknowledge that right there on the front lines, alongside whistleblowers and civil society, stand the journalists. Armed with only their determination to inform society and defend the truth, caught in the crossfire of shots fired from both sides.
If you believe in supporting the cause and the work of Daily Maverick then take your position on the battleground and sign up to Maverick Insider today.
For whatever amount you choose, you can support Daily Maverick and it only takes a minute.
Terry Pratchett forged his own sword from iron and meteorites purely for the occasion of the awarding of his knighthood.