Judge Jennifer Dorsey has thrown out the federal civil case against Cristiano Ronaldo for alleged rape of a woman in a Las Vegas hotel room in 2009.
The alleged rape case against the Portuguese soccer player was dismissed on Friday by the judge, citing an attorney for accuser Kathryn Mayorga engaged in misconduct so severe that it would be impossible for the soccere superstar to have a fair trial.
Judge Dorsey said “Because of her attorney’s abuses and flagrant circumvention of the proper litigation process, Mayorga loses her opportunity to pursue this case and attempt to unwind the settlement of claims that, themselves, implicate serious allegations of a highly personal nature.”
The case was dismissed with prejudice, meaning Mayorga cannot refile the complaint.
Mayorga said she was coerced into signing a nondisclosure agreement and $375,000 settlement following the alleged rape, which Ronaldo has maintained was a consensual sexual encounter. Mayorga had asked the judge to void that agreement.
The existence of the settlement was first reported by the German newspaper Der Spiegel in 2017 using leaked confidential communications from Ronaldo’s attorneys.
The court found that one of Mayorga’s attorneys, Leslie Stovall, reached out to the source of that leak to request those documents, including “the reporting and communications of the attorneys and investigators representing and defending Ronaldo following the sexual assault thru the negotiations and conclusion of the settlement and non-disclosure agreement.”
“Stovall’s repeated use of stolen, privileged documents to prosecute this case has every indicia of bad-faith conduct,” Judge Dorsey wrote Friday.
The judge found that “the misappropriated documents and their confidential contents have been woven into the very fabric of Mayorga’s claims,” stating that simply striking the leaked documents from the case and disqualifying Stovall would not adequately address the misconduct.
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 they would not pursue criminal charges, saying the allegations could not be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.