Cristiano Ronaldo protest group flies ‘Believe Kathryn Mayorga’ banner naming his rape accuser over Old Trafford

A BANNER bearing the name of Cristiano Ronaldo’s alleged rape victim has been flown over Old Trafford in protest against the Portugal captain.

The 36-year-old football sensation today made his return to Manchester United for their Premier League clash against Newcastle – taking just 47 minutes to net his first goal back in red, before making it a debut double by scoring again in the second half.

Richard Pelham / The Sun

A protest group has flown a banner reading Believe Kathryn Mayorga over the stadium[/caption]

AP:Associated Press

Kathryn Mayorga accused Ronaldo of sexually assaulting her in 2009, when she was 25[/caption]

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Ronaldo has returned to Man U today for their clash against Newcastle[/caption]

Richard Pelham / The Sun

The plane has been circling over Old Trafford[/caption]

But as the game unfolded at the Man U stadium, a plane with a banner with Believe Kathryn Mayorga written across it circled above, reportedly organised by feminist campaign group Level Up.

Kathryn previously accused Ronaldo of sexually assaulting her in a Las Vegas hotel room after meeting on a night out in 2009, when she was 25 – an allegation he vehemently denies.

Court documents revealed in April that she is claiming £56million in damages.

She wants £18m for “past pain and suffering”, £18m for “future pain and suffering” and £18m in punitive damages.

The 37-year-old’s expenses rack up to £1.4m.

That includes legal fees of £1.1m.

And it means the grand total is a whopping £56.5m – equal to two years of the Juventus star’s salary.

In 2010, Ms Mayorga accepted $375,000 – £270,000 – as part of an out-of-court non-disclosure settlement.

But three years ago, Ms Mayorga filed a civil lawsuit in Las Vegas saying she had been “mentally incapacitated” when she agreed to it.

And she claims she signed it under duress.

Ronaldo has said: “I firmly deny the accusations being issued against me.

“Rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in.

“Keen as I may be to clear my name, I refuse to feed the media spectacle created by people seeking to promote themselves at my expense.”

On the night in question, Ronaldo, then 24, was in Vegas on holiday with his brother-in-law and cousin.

Ms Mayorga, who worked Rain nightclub inside the Palms Casino Resort, says she met Ronaldo in the venue’s VIP area.

He then invited her and a friend to his penthouse suite – room 57306 at the Palms – “to enjoy the view of the Las Vegas Strip”, she claims.

The luxurious suite featured a jacuzzi on the balcony.

Ms Mayorga claims she refused to get into the hot tub because she did not want to ruin her dress.

She said Ronaldo offered her some clothes to wear and told her to change in a bathroom.

The court papers claim that while she was changing Ronaldo walked in and exposed himself before asking her to perform a sex act.

Ms Mayorga says she then kissed him after refusing to engage in the sex act on the condition that he would let her go.

According to Ms Mayorga, after he pulled her into the bedroom and raped her, Ronaldo told her he was a “good guy” except for the “one per cent”.

Court documents lodged by her lawyers state Ms Mayorga had refused Ronaldo’s advances while screaming: “No, no, no”.

‘FAKE NEWS’

Ms Mayorga reported the alleged crime to Las Vegas cops the next day but refused to name Ronaldo.

She later decided not to prosecute and signed the non-disclosure agreement in January 2010.

Despite acknowledging the existence of the NDA, his lawyers maintained that it was “by no means a confession of guilt”.

But in September 2018, as the #MeToo movement broke out, Ms Mayorga broke the agreement by giving an interview, resulting in Las Vegas Police reopening the case.

The Clark County District Attorney’s office announced in 2019 that it would not prosecute Ronaldo.  

In a statement, it said: “Based upon a review of the information presented at this time, the allegations of sexual assault against Cristiano Ronaldo cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.

“Therefore, no charges will be forthcoming.”

Ronaldo strongly denies the claims and has called them “fake news”, claiming the sex was consensual.

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