A Las Vegas court in the United States has dismissed Kathryn Mayorga's request for millions of dollars in damages from footballer Cristiano Ronaldo in a case of alleged rape in 2009.
Kathryn Mayorga, who accused the Portuguese international of raping her in a Las Vegas hotel, received $375,000 (€354,664) in a confidential settlement in August 2010, but then sought further compensation of $25 million (€23.6 million).
The same judge also found that the plaintiff's lawyer, Leslie Mark Stovall, had displayed "bad faith conduct" in the case, as the judge in charge of the case, magistrate Daniel Albregts, had argued last year.
The judges accused Kathryn Mayorga's lawyer of wrongfully basing their case on stolen confidential documents showing communications between Ronaldo and his lawyers.
On Friday, Judge Dorsey wrote in a 42-page report that dismissing a case giving it no chance of being reopened "is a severe sanction", but that the conduct of the plaintiff's lawyer had harmed the case and therefore impossible to handle fairly.
"The continued use of these documents was 'in bad faith', and claimed that a censure of Mayorga's lawyer was not enough because their contents were used to fabricate the basis of the complaint, and therefore ruled for 'severe sanctions' ", Judge Jennifer Dorsey reported.
Similarly, in 2021, in a 23-page report to Judge Jennifer Dorsey, also cited by the AP, Magistrate Daniel Albregts, who recommended dismissal, wrote: "Rejecting Mayorga's case for her lawyer's misconduct is a difficult consequence.
"But it is, unfortunately, the only appropriate sanction to ensure the integrity of the judicial process," he added, arguing that "Stovall acted in bad faith to the detriment of his client and his profession."
Albregts noted in his report that the court made no ruling on whether Ronaldo committed a crime and found no evidence that his lawyers "intimidated Mayorga or impeded law enforcement" when the former model dropped criminal charges and accepted the confidential $375,000 settlement in August 2010.
The news of this financial settlement was made public by German media outlet Der Spiegel in an article published in 2017 entitled 'Cristiano Ronaldo's Secret' based on documents obtained from the digital platform 'Football Leaks'.
For Daniel Albregts the news released by Der Spiegel made it clear "that these documents included privileged communications (...) between Ronaldo's European and US lawyers about the deal".
He considered that Stovall "acted in bad faith in requesting, receiving and using the 'Football Leaks' documents to advance Mayorga's case".
In the case, Albregts also rejected Stovall's argument that the use of the documents was justified because it was not the lawyer who stole them, and he could not prove they were stolen.
The magistrate recommended in his report that the judge also reject Stovall's claim that because Mayorga had learning difficulties as a child and was pressured by Ronaldo's representatives, she lacked the mental capacity to sign the confidentiality agreement in 2010.
For Albregts "Mayorga's case against Ronaldo would probably not exist if Stovall had not requested the 'Football Leaks' documents" and Mayorga's knowledge of the contents of the documents "cannot be undone", the magistrate reported last year.
The US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ruled earlier this year that it would be up to Jennifer Dorsey to rule on this issue.