Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo Joins Juventus Photo by David S. Bustamante/Soccrates/Getty Images

Manchester United striker Cristiano Ronaldo is reportedly trying to block the release of witness statements in connection with his 2009 Las Vegas rape case, fearing that it might lead to harassment of those people involved.

Ronaldo has firmly denied raping Kathryn Mayorga at the Palms Hotel and Casino on June 12, 2009. The 37-year-old footballer initially settled a payment of £276,000 ($373,000) with his accuser in a civil case. However, she is now seeking a further £56 million ($75 million) as damages.

The Portuguese footballer's legal team is making an effort to avoid releasing files that contain details about his Las Vegas rape case from 2009. Medical reports, CCTV footage, emails, recorded interviews and witness statements are the files in question.

Ronaldo's lawyers have issued two separate responses to block the release of police files related to the rape case. According to his lawyers, most of the information stored in the files was originally obtained illegally by the Football Leaks website.

However, as reported by The Sun, Ronaldo's legal team now insists that the files should remain unreleased, explaining the danger it might bring to Ronaldo, Mayorga and other witnesses who provided information.

In the submissions filed on Feb. 8 from his lawyers said, "The persons named in LVMPD's file, as well as those who provided information contained therein, have a strong interest in 'not being associated unwarrantedly with alleged criminal activity'."

"Plaintiff, Defendant, and the witnesses who were interviewed as part of the reopened investigation all have non-trivial privacy interests." Ronaldo's team also pointed out how he is a "famous athlete" who attracts "substantial media attention," which the lawyers say in turn creates a "significant risk of harassment" to witnesses if the files are made available to the public.

"Disclosure of any portion of LVMPD's file would certainly infringe upon those privacy interests and result in undeserved embarrassment and potentially serious reputational harm." Their submission added, "Disclosure of the witness statements even in redacted form coupled with the number of various news articles and media reports concerning this matter creates a significant risk that those witness' identities will be revealed. A balancing of the privacy interests at issue against the public interest in disclosure strongly militates against disclosure."

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo of Manchester United during the UEFA Champions League match between Club Atlético de Madrid and Manchester United at the Estadio Metropolitano on February 23, 2022 in Madrid, Spain. Photo by DAX Images/BSR Agency/Getty Images

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