A US magistrate has recommended that a civil lawsuit against Cristiano Ronaldo, Manchester United star, for alleged rape should be outrightly dismissed.
According to BBC Sports, Daniel Albregts, a magistrate judge in the United States district court for the district of Nevada, gave the recommendation ahead of a final decision before a separate judge.
Kathryn Mayorga had sued Ronaldo for alleged rape at a Las Vegas hotel in 2010 but both parties reached an out-of-court settlement for $375,000.
A criminal investigation was instituted against Ronaldo in 2019 on fresh complaints by the alleged victim, but prosecutors opted against charges because the claims could “not be proven beyond reasonable doubt”.
However, Leslie Mark Stovall, Mayorga’s lawyers, filed a civil lawsuit for more compensation but has received a major setback from Albregts for inappropriate conduct.
The judge recommended that using evidence from leaked documents to institute a case could have “dangerous consequences” on the judicial process.
“Dismissing Mayorga’s case for the inappropriate conduct of her attorney is a harsh result,” Albregts wrote.
“If the court does not grant case-terminating sanctions, [her lawyer’s] actions could have far-reaching, dangerous consequences on the legitimacy of the judicial process”.
Peter Christiansen, Ronaldo’s lawyer, was however pleased with the recommendation.
“We are pleased with the court’s detailed review of this matter and its willingness to justly apply the law to the facts and recommend dismissal of the civil case against Mr Ronaldo,” he said.
Ronaldo, who left Manchester United before the incident, returned to the club after 12 years in August.