Spanish suspended football federation chief Luis Rubiales could potentially face a sexual assault charge following a criminal complaint filed by player Jenni Hermoso over an unsolicited kiss at the Women’s World Cup final.
Spanish football star Jenni Hermoso has filed a criminal complaint against federation boss Luis Rubiales for an unsolicited kiss after Spain’s victory in the Women’s World Cup. Prosecutors confirmed this development on Wednesday.
This complaint, submitted on Tuesday, paves the way for prosecutors to initiate a preliminary investigation into possible sexual assault charges. The prosecutor’s office indicated that they would expedite the processing of the complaint.
The legal action raises the prospect of criminal charges against Rubiales. Additionally, ongoing investigations by Spain’s top sports court into “serious misconduct” and a FIFA investigation, which has led to the provisional suspension of Rubiales, have further complicated his situation.
What Transpired After the World Cup Final? The incident in question occurred during the medal ceremony following Spain’s 1-0 victory over England in the final of the Women’s World Cup in Australia on August 20. Rubiales approached Hermoso and kissed her on the lips without her consent.
Hermoso later revealed that the unwelcome kiss had left her feeling “vulnerable and like the victim of an assault.” She posted a statement on social media characterizing it as “an impulsive, macho act, out of place and without any form of consent on my part.”
Rubiales, who has faced significant pressure to resign but has refused to do so, defended the kiss as “spontaneous, mutual, euphoric, and consensual.”
Last month, Spain’s High Court prosecutor stated that Rubiales could potentially be charged with sexual assault, an offense carrying a prison sentence of one to four years, should Hermoso decide to file a complaint.
Following an illustrious career with top Spanish and European clubs, including Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, and Atletico Madrid, Hermoso currently plays for the Mexican club Pachuca.