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11 Dec, 2020 10:42

Ex-Brazil superstar Robinho facing NINE YEARS in jail as rape conviction upheld

Ex-Brazil superstar Robinho facing NINE YEARS in jail as rape conviction upheld

Former Real Madrid and Manchester City star Robinho is facing a term of nine years in jail after an appeal failed to overturn a 2017 conviction for rape stemming from an incident with an Albanian woman in Milan four years prior.

The former Brazil international was among six people found guilty of the gang rape of the woman in a nightclub in the Italian city during his time with AC Milan in 2013.

Each of the men found guilty was ordered to pay the woman a sum of $65,000 (£50,000 / €54,000), while Robinho was handed a lengthy jail sentence.

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However, Robinho quickly contested the conviction but was informed late Thursday that his appeal had been quashed and the rape conviction upheld. Legal representatives for the player say that they plan to appeal the conviction for a second time.

"This sentence is an example for the protection of women and shows that the system works, when necessary," the woman's lawyer, Jacopo Gnocchi, told the media.

Per Italian law, Robinho won't be officially sentenced until the appeals process has concluded but Italian prosecutor Cuno Tarfusser appeared confident that justice had been done.

"[It was] a well-done investigation, seriously, with a correct first-degree sentence," Tarfusser said.

"Professionally, I am very satisfied, especially for the victim."

Brazilian club Santos, where Robinho began his career, had inked a deal with the player in October after a one-season spell in Turkey with Istanbul Basaksehir but tore up his contract soon after the negative publicity associated with his sexual violence conviction, saying that they did so to allow Robinho to "concentrate exclusively on his defense in the process that takes place in Italy."

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Robinho denied the Italian rape allegations, just as he did when he found himself in similar legal trouble during his time at Manchester City after he was questioned for an alleged rape in a Leeds nightclub in 2009.