Spain’s federal prosecutors have launched an investigation into Luis Rubiales, the president of the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF), following allegations of a nonconsensual kiss. The incident occurred after the Spanish women’s soccer team won the Women’s World Cup earlier this month. Player Jennifer Hermoso has accused Rubiales of sexual aggression, prompting the investigation into the alleged crime.
Rubiales, who denies any wrongdoing, now faces the possibility of a lawsuit from Hermoso. The controversy surrounding the incident has led to Hermoso and her World Cup teammates, along with numerous other Spanish soccer players, refusing to play for Spain unless Rubiales resigns from his position.
In a show of support for her son, Rubiales’ mother, Ángeles Béjar, has locked herself in a church and declared a hunger strike. She claims her son is being unfairly targeted and subjected to inhumane treatment. FIFA, the international governing body for soccer, has also suspended Rubiales from participating in FIFA activities for 90 days.
Despite mounting pressure, Rubiales has refused to step down and maintains that the kiss was consensual. Initially, he admitted to acting inappropriately but now asserts that Hermoso initiated the celebratory kiss. Hermoso, however, firmly denies Rubiales’ version of events, stating that she did not consent to the kiss and felt disrespected and victimized.
The RFEF has responded to the situation by threatening to sue Hermoso for defamation, while Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and other politicians are calling for Rubiales to be held accountable.
The investigation into Rubiales’ alleged nonconsensual kiss has sparked a heated debate within the Spanish soccer community, with divided opinions on the appropriate course of action.