Brazilian footballer Robinho has been sentenced to nine years in jail after an Italian court found the former Real Madrid, Manchester City and AC Milan player guilty of sexually assaulting a 22-year-old woman in a Milan nightclub in 2013.
According to Italian daily “La Stamapa,” a tribunal presided over by magistrate Mariolina Panasiti passed the verdict on Thursday. In line with Italian law, Robinho has the right to various avenues of appeal before the sentence is confirmed. Five other men were also found guilty in absentia as their current whereabouts are unknown. Robinho, who currently plays for Atlético Mineiro in his native Brazil and did not appear at any of the hearings, may face an extradition request from the Italian authorities if the appeals process is eventually exhausted but the Brazilian Constitution states that "in no case will a foreign state’s request for the extradition of a Brazilian citizen be granted."
The Milan court also ordered that the victim should receive 60,000 euros in compensation.
Robinho denies allegations
In 2014, Robinho issued a statement through lawyers denying the allegations.
“The information published today in Italy regarding the player Robson de Souza is completely irresponsible. Robinho affirms that he had nothing to do with the incident referred to. Every legal action is currently under consideration.
"Robinho regrets the episode, which was brought to light without any foundation at a period of professional, personal and family contentment.”
Robinho was also accused of sexual assault in London in 2009 while at Manchester City but was cleared of any wrongdoing.
The 2014 statement also made reference to the earlier claim and suggested it was being used “in an opportunistic manner” with regard to the alleged incident in Milan.