Rubiales tells Spanish court Women’s World Cup kiss was consensual

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Rubiales tells Spanish court Women’s World Cup kiss was consensual

A judge has been asked to ban Spain’s ex-football boss Luis Rubiales from approaching footballer Jenni Hermoso.

Prosecutors asked for a restraining order as the court in Madrid considered a criminal complaint of sexual assault and coercion.

Mr Rubiales, 46, denied sexually assaulting Ms Hermoso by kissing her on the lips as Spain celebrated winning the Women’s World Cup.

Ms Hermoso says she did not consent to the kiss.

The former president of the football federation (RFEF), who resigned his position earlier this week, appeared in a closed court session to deny two criminal offences.

The court, presided over by Judge Francisco de Jorge, is yet to rule whether the case will go to trial.

Spain won the Women’s World Cup in Australia on 20 August, but the team’s victory has been overshadowed ever since by Mr Rubiales’s actions during the celebrations after the final whistle.

Mr Rubiales arrived in court in a black suit and white shirt, and spent a reported 45 minutes being questioned by the judge.

After denying the allegations against him, he left the court alongside his lawyer Olga Tubau.

The prosecutor asked the judge to bar him from approaching within 500m (1,600ft) of Jenni Hermoso, or from communicating with her.

Mr Rubiales has maintained that when he held her head in his hands and kissed her on the lips it was mutual and consensual. He eventually resigned on Sunday as president of the federation, declaring: “I have faith in the truth and I will do everything in my power so that it prevails.”

Ms Hermoso, 33, says that she did not consent to the kiss. Prosecutors submitted her initial complaint of sexual assault and added one of coercion, arguing that he had put pressure on the Spain forward to come to his defence amid uproar in the days after the kiss.