Cristiano Ronaldo has been asked to submit a DNA sample to the Las Vegas Police Department as part of an ongoing investigation into a sexual assault allegation against the Portuguese soccer star. The Washington Post reports that police have sent a warrant to Italy, where Ronaldo is based, as he plays for Serie A team, Juventus.
The five-time Ballon d’Or winner has previously denied that he raped a Nevada woman in a hotel room in 2009 and paid her $375,000 to keep it a secret. He claims that their sexual intercourse was consensual. His attorney, Peter S. Christiansen, reiterated that defense in an interview with the Washington Post and seemed unfazed by the request for his client’s DNA.
“Mr. Ronaldo has always maintained, as he does today, that what occurred in Las Vegas in 2009 was consensual in nature,” Christiansen said, “so it is not surprising that DNA would be present, nor that the police would make this very standard request as part of their investigation.”
The Las Vegas Police also indicated that this is a “standard” step in cases that involve a report of sexual assault.
“The LVMPD is taking the same steps in this case as in any other sexual assault to facilitate the collection of DNA evidence,” LVMPD Officer Laura Meltzer said, as reported by CNN. “We can confirm that an official request has been submitted to Italian authorities.”
According to the Washington Post, Ronaldo’s accuser, Kathryn Mayorga, reported the alleged rape to the police in June of 2009. However, at the time she did not name Ronaldo as her rapist and did not disclose the location of the incident. She filed a civil suit against him last year and requested the reopening of the police investigation.
Las Vegas police investigating a rape allegation against Cristiano Ronaldo have sent a warrant to authorities in Italy requesting a sample of the Portuguese football superstar's DNA, a police spokeswoman said https://t.co/Fcbc9HBGmG pic.twitter.com/EgjsiWnv1A
— CNN (@CNN) January 11, 2019
One of Mayorga’s attorneys told the Washington Post that they have “no information” about the police investigation.
As the Wall Street Journal reports, police want to find out if the DNA on a dress that Mayorga wore that night matches Cristiano Ronaldo’s. When they conclude their investigation, they will pass their findings on to the Clark County District Attorney’s office, which has the authority to file criminal charges against Ronaldo.
His attorney told the Washington Post that the Juventus forward has not been served in relation to the civil lawsuit filed by Moyorga.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Ronaldo and Mayorga met at a nightclub at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. In the civil lawsuit, she reports that he later invited her to a party in his hotel room. She claims that after he assaulted her, “he allowed her to leave the bedroom stating he was sorry, he was usually a gentleman.”