Hermoso files criminal complaint against Rubiales

September 7 – Jennifer Hermoso has filed a criminal complaint against Luis Rubiales over the kiss after Spain’s World Cup victory, accusing the football official of sexual assault.

Prosecutors in Spain said they are investigating the unsolicited kiss that Rubiales planted on the lips of Hermoso during the Women’s World Cup trophy presentation and that Hermoso has filed a criminal complaint against the Spanish FA president.

The prosecutor’s office said that Hermoso’s testimony, given one day earlier, would be processed “as soon as possible”. Rubiales could face a fine or between one and four years in prison if found guilty of sexual assault, under a sexual consent law.

In a statement published late last month, Hermoso said the incident had left her feeling “vulnerable and a victim of aggression”. She described the kiss as an “impulsive act, sexist, out of place and without any type of consent from my part”.

FIFA moved to suspend Rubiales for 90 days, pending an investigation, while UEFA, where Rubiales serves as a vice-president, is waiting for the conclusion of the FIFA case, though the confederation’s president Aleksander Ceferin has called the kiss “inappropriate”.

Rubiales has always maintained the innocence of his intentions, portraying the kiss as consensual.  Last Friday, he said he had “made some obvious mistakes which I sincerely regret”, but added that he would “prove the truth”.

On Tuesday, the RFEF issued an apology for Rubiales’s behaviour, citing the “enormous damage” done by his actions. That same day, the Spanish FA dismissed coach Jorge Vilda, who led Spain to World Cup glory in Sydney but had a strained relationship with his players group over accusations of his abrasive coaching style.

But Vilda, like Rubiales, went on the defense. “I have given 100% over 17 years and I do not understand [the decision]. I did not deserve my sacking,” Vild told a local broadcaster.

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