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Former Barcelona, Brazil defender Alves given jail term for sexual assault

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-02-22 20:30

Brazil soccer player Dani Alves sits in court during the first day of his trial in Barcelona, Spain, Feb 5, 2024. [Photo/Agencies]

MADRID -- Former FC Barcelona and Brazil defender Dani Alves was on Thursday given a four-and-a-half-year sentence after being found guilty of sexual aggression by a court in Barcelona.

The 40-year-old will also have to spend a further five years of "supervised freedom" and pay the victim 150,000 euros ($163,000), as well as the costs of the trial.

The case relates to an incident which occurred in the "Sutton" nightclub in Barcelona on the night of December 30, 2022.

The victim immediately reported the incident, alleging Alves had raped her. She was examined in hospital, before making a full testimony to police on January 3, 2023, giving a story that, according to prosecutors and judge, was "clear, firm, forceful, credible, coherent and persistent."

Alves, who was playing in Mexico at the time, was arrested on returning to Spain on January 20. His defense was not helped by the fact he changed his story "three or four times", and what he said differed from the images taken by video surveillance cameras in the club.

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