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Rape case against soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo dismissed for ‘misconduct’ by plaintiff’s attorney

Luis Ernesto Quintana Barney

(CNN) — The federal civil case alleging Portuguese soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo raped a woman in a Las Vegas hotel room in 2009 was dismissed Friday.

Judge Jennifer Dorsey accepted a federal magistrate’s recommendation, saying a lawyer for accuser Kathryn Mayorga committed such serious misconduct that it would be impossible for Ronaldo to get a fair trial.

“Due to his attorney’s abuses and blatant circumvention of the proper litigation process, Mayorga misses his opportunity to pursue this case and attempt to unsettle claims which, themselves, involve serious allegations of a very personal nature,” he wrote. Dorsey.

The case was dismissed with prejudice, which means that Mayorga cannot file the complaint again.

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Mayorga said she was forced to sign a non-disclosure agreement and a $375,000 settlement after the alleged rape, which Ronaldo has maintained was a consensual sexual encounter. Mayorga had asked the judge to annul that agreement.

The existence of the deal was first reported by the German newspaper Der Spiegel in 2017 using leaked confidential communications from Ronaldo’s lawyers.

The court found that one of Mayorga’s attorneys, Leslie Stovall, approached the source of that leak to request those documents, including “reports and communications from attorneys and investigators representing and defending Ronaldo following the sexual assault.” through the negotiations and conclusion of the settlement and non-disclosure agreement.”

“Stovall’s repeated use of stolen privileged documents to prosecute this case bears all the hallmarks of bad faith conduct,” Judge Dorsey wrote Friday.

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The judge concluded that “the misappropriated documents and their confidential content have been woven into the very fabric of Mayorga’s claims,” ​​stating that simply removing the leaked documents from the case and disqualifying Stovall would not adequately address the misconduct.

CNN has reached out to Stovall for comment on the decision.

Ronaldo’s attorney, Peter Christiansen, said in an email to CNN on Saturday: “Since the plaintiff first filed the lawsuit in 2018, we have maintained that the action was brought in bad faith. The outright dismissal of the plaintiff’s case should give all who follow this matter renewed confidence in the judicial process in this country as he deters those who seek to undermine it.”

The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department reopened a criminal investigation at Mayorga’s request in August 2018. In July 2019, the Clark County District Attorney’s Office announced that it would not pursue criminal charges, saying the allegations could not be proven. beyond a reasonable doubt.

The-CNN-Wire
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