Former Barcelona and Brazil superstar, Dani Alves asks for provisional release from prison, says

Former Barcelona and Brazil superstar, Dani Alves asks for provisional release from prison, says ‘I won’t run away’

Former Barcelona and Brazil superstar, Dani Alves asks for provisional release from prison, says

Former Brazil and Barcelona footballer, Dani Alves has pleaded to be released from prison pending his final sentence for raping a woman in a Barcelona nightclub.

Alves, 40, who was sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison last month, told a hearing on Tuesday morning: ‘I believe in justice. I’m not going to run away.’

His request to be released from the Brians 2 Prison near Barcelona, where he has been held since January last year, has been opposed by the prosecutor’s office in Spain.

They argue there remains a flight risk given Alves’ wealth and the high penalty imposed, Marca reported.

 

Former Barcelona and Brazil superstar, Dani Alves asks for provisional release from prison, says

Alves, appearing via video link from prison, assured the court he plans to ‘get to the end’ of the case because he ‘believes in justice.’

Alves plans to appeal the sentence he received last month. A decision over whether to release Alves until his final sentence is confirmed will be made shortly by the court.

Alves, one of the most decorated footballers in history, had denied sexually assaulting the woman in the early hours of December 31, 2022.

He claimed he had consensual sex in a toilet at upmarket Barcelona nightclub Sutton with his 23-year-old female accuser.

The woman insisted the footballer had forced himself on her after hitting her when she gave evidence in court.

State prosecutors had pushed for a nine-year jail term and a lawyer acting for his victim had demanded 12 years behind bars if convicted.

The three trial judges confirmed in a 61-page written ruling released after Alves learned his sentence in a behind-closed-doors hearing last month they had taken into account as a ‘mitigating factor’ his pre-payment of the £128,000 (€150,000) he was ordered to give his victim as compensation.

They concluded she had danced with Alves before going voluntarily to a toilet next to Sutton’s VIP area the footballer had entered moments earlier in what they described as an apparent ‘prior agreement’ to ‘be with him in a more intimate space.’

But outlining what they ruled had been proven and had contributed to them convicting Alves, they added: ‘He tried to penetrate his victim by making use of his greater strength and throwing her on the floor and making her bang her knee.

‘The victim asked Dani Alves to let her leave, making it clear she wanted to get out of there, but he didn’t let her.

 

‘Finding herself in that situation, in that small toilet without any option of being able to leave because Mr Alves was preventing her with the violent attitude he was demonstrating, she felt shocked and unable to react or breathe properly given the situation of anguish and terror she was experiencing.’

They added of the toilet rape: ‘Using his physical strength and overcoming his victim’s opposition, Alves bent her over the toilet and raped his victim until he ejaculated inside her, without using a condom and without her consent.’

In an attack on the footballer’s actions they said that even if she had got intimate with Alves before accompanying him voluntarily to the toilet, it didn’t mean she was saying ‘yes’ to sex.

‘It didn’t give him carte blanche to carry out the sex attack that occurred afterwards’, they insisted.

‘Consent during sex should always be given before or even during the practice of sex, in such a way that a person can agree to sexual relations up until a certain point and express their opposition to continue.’

David Saez, who attended court as part of the rape victim’s defence team instead of her main defence lawyer Ester Garcia, said: ‘We have to fully study the sentence but we are satisfied because it’s a conviction which recognises what we have always known which is the truth the victim was telling and the suffering she has experienced.’

Dani Alves’ lawyer Ines Guardiola confirmed outside court after the footballer was jailed last month that she would appeal.

She said: ‘We are going to appeal the sentence and I still believe in the innocence of Mr Alves. He’s doing okay.’

‘Obviously, four-and-a-half years’ prison is better than nine years or 12 years and I have yet to read the full sentence but I will appeal.’

As well as prison and the £128,000 (€150,000) damages payment, Alves was given a further five years parole and a nine-and-a-half year restraining order preventing him from contacting his victim or going near her.

Alves, who became the oldest player to represent Brazil at the World Cup in December 2022 in Qatar, was ordered to stand trial last November.

He was sacked by Mexican side UNAM Pumas following his arrest in Barcelona at the start of last year after he flew back to the Catalan capital to attend his mother-in-law’s funeral.

 

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