Luis Rubiales to appear in court on Friday

by Lorraine Williamson
Rubiales in court

MADRID – Luis Rubiales, the former president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation, has been charged with sexual assault and coercion after an unsolicited kiss to football player Jenni Hermoso. Because of that, he must appear in court on Friday, September 15. 

The Audiencia Nacional, Spain’s national court, has heard the charges. The allegations come after an incident at the World Cup trophy ceremony in Sydney, where Rubiales kissed Jenni Hermoso full on the mouth without her consent. Hermoso, a player for the Spanish national women’s team, confirmed in a statement that the kiss did not take place with her consent. Furthermore, she claimed that both she and those around her have been pressured to state otherwise. 

The role of the judge 

The judge has summoned Rubiales to appear in court in person on Friday, September 15 at noon. On Monday, the Public Prosecution Service filed the official indictment against Rubiales for the crimes of sexual assault and coercion. In addition, the first investigative acts in this procedure were agreed upon. 

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Research into video material 

Moreover, as part of the investigation, the judge requested video footage from various sources. This includes video footage from Spanish public broadcaster ‘RTVE’. This footage captured the moment from different angles, as well as the minutes immediately before and after the incident. Furthermore, ‘El País’ and ‘AS’ were also approached for video footage of the celebration in the dressing room and of the moment of the kiss. ‘La Vanguardia’ has been asked to hand over the video of the celebration on the bus of the Spanish women’s football team. 

Fuss and consequences 

The incident caused a worldwide outcry. This eventually led to Rubiales’ provisional suspension by FIFA for 90 days. Then, on Sunday, Rubiales resigned from the Royal Spanish Football Federation after more than five years at the helm of the institution, just 21 days after the incident. 

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