Former Spain Football Federation Head Charged with Sexual Assault and Coercion in Historic Case of Misconduct

Prosecutors seek jail time for Luis Rubiales over World Cup kiss incident

A Spanish prosecutor has charged former Spain football federation head Luis Rubiales with sexual assault and coercion for kissing female footballer Jenni Hermoso without her consent. This incident, which took place following Spain’s World Cup victory, led to charges against Rubiales and four other men who allegedly coerced Hermoso into claiming the kiss was consensual. If convicted, all five men could face up to 18 months in jail. Prosecutor Marta Durantez is seeking €100,000 in damages for Hermoso, with Rubiales responsible for at least half of this amount.

The scandal has overshadowed the historic achievement of Spain’s women’s team, which had won its first ever World Cup at the time. Rubiales’ behavior during the trophy presentation, including the unwanted kiss and inappropriate gestures, sparked global outrage over sexism in women’s sports. The incident prompted calls for changes in women’s football in Spain, with players boycotting national team events.

Rubiales’ actions have brought attention to issues of sexism and misconduct in sports, emphasizing the importance of respecting boundaries and consent in all aspects of the game. His resignation from both the Spanish football federation and Uefa in September was a result of his suspension by Fifa due to the incident.

Sophia Reynolds

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