Luis Rubiales arrives at Spanish court to be questioned over his kiss of player at Women's World Cup

Judge Francisco de Jorge issued the order earlier this week for Rubiales to answer his questions at Spain’s National Court.

Published: 15th September 2023 03:28 PM  |   Last Updated: 15th September 2023 03:28 PM   |  A+A-

Rubiales, 45, kissed Hermoso as he handed the Spanish team gold medals after they beat England 1-0 in the final in Sydney, provoking outrage in Spain. (Photo | AFP)

By Associated Press

MADRID: Luis Rubiales, the former president of Spain’s soccer federation, has arrived at a court in Madrid to give testimony on Friday to a Spanish judge investigating his kiss of a player at the Women’s World Cup.

Judge Francisco de Jorge issued the order earlier this week for Rubiales to answer his questions at Spain’s National Court.

Rubiales kissed Spain forward Jenni Hermoso on the lips during the awards ceremony after Spain beat England to win the title on Aug. 20 in Sydney, Australia. He said she had consented to the kiss, but Hermoso has denied that repeatedly.

ALSO READ | Spanish football chief Rubiales resigns over kiss scandal

Rubiales did not speak before entering the courthouse with his lawyer.

Spanish state prosecutors formally accused Rubiales last week of alleged sexual assault and an act of coercion when, according to Hermoso, he pressured her to speak out in his defence immediately after the scandal erupted.

Rubiales announced on Sunday that he was resigning from his post, from which he had already been provisionally suspended by FIFA.

De Jorge is carrying out the preliminary investigation into the accusations against Rubiales, and will then decide whether the case should go to trial.

According to a sexual consent law passed in Spain last year, Rubiales could face a fine or a prison sentence of one to four years if found guilty of sexual assault. The new law eliminated the difference between “sexual harassment” and “sexual assault,” sanctioning any non-consensual sexual act.

ALSO READ | Unwanted kiss: Spanish prosecutors accuse football chief Luis Rubiales of sexual assault

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