Cristiano Ronaldo’s lawyers have said they are willing to strike an out-of-court deal with his rape accuser.
The Juventus star’s legal team have responded to a rape lawsuit brought by Kathryn Mayorga by asking for it to be dismissed or for a judge to ‘compel arbitration’, according to Der Spiegel.
This would mean the case is settled privately, outside of court with the help of an expert mediator.
Attorneys have also requested more time to answer the 11 complaints in Mayorga’s suit, and to breach the 24-page limit set for their own defence report.
Lawyers for Cristiano Ronaldo have responded to a rape lawsuit brought by Kathryn Mayorga (pictured together on the night she alleges the attack happened, in 2009) saying they want the suit dismissed or for the case to be settled outside of court
A legal filing by Ronaldo’s team said that, because of the complexity of the 31-page suit filed against the athlete, their rebuttal may need to run up to 46 pages.
The allegations include rape, assault, coercion, defamation and breach of contract.
Leslie Mark Stovall, Mayorga’s lawyer, told Der Spiegel that he is not surprised by the request and would also not be surprised if the judge granted it.
He expects a ruling in the coming weeks, and will then have 14 days to respond to it himself. Mr Stovall did not rule out taking the case to arbitration.
Mayorga, now 34, claimed in September last year that Ronaldo 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, saying: ‘Rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in.’
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department are also investigating Ronaldo.
Mayorga said she was pursuing a career in modelling and working as a promoter for the Rain nightclub when she met Ronaldo as 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 has vehemently denied the claims, saying that ‘rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in’
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.