Lawyers drop Brazil star Neymar’s rape accuser

The lawyers representing the woman who accused Paris Saint-Germain’s Brazilian forward Neymar of sexually assaulting her, say they have dropped her as a client because her story is inconsistent. (AFP/Franck Fife)
Updated 04 June 2019

Lawyers drop Brazil star Neymar’s rape accuser

  • The woman's lawyers say her story is inconsistent
  • Neymar denies the allegations that have been made against him

TEERESOPOLIS, Brazil: Lawyers for a woman who accused Brazil star Neymar of rape are no longer representing her because of contradictions in her story, Globo TV reported on Monday.
The Fernandes e Abreu law firm say their client initially told them she had had consensual sex with Neymar, the world’s most expensive footballer, in a Paris hotel in May and that he then became violent and assaulted her.
But the lawyers said that in the official complaint the women gave to the Brazilian police, the woman “described what had happened as ‘rape’, which is a completely different allegation.”
Neymar posted a seven-minute video on Instagram on Saturday vehemently denying he had raped the woman.
In the video, he showed a string of WhatsApp messages he said he had received from the Brazilian woman. He also named her and showed what he said were photographs of her topless and apparently in his hotel bed.
Police in Rio said Sunday they had launched an investigation into the publication of intimate information on social media concerning the women.
The player’s father has claimed he is the victim of blackmail.
Neymar, who was transferred to PSG from Barcelona for a world-record 222 million euros ($248.5 million) in 2017, is currently in Brazil preparing for the Copa America, which takes place in the country from June 14 to July 7.
His 2018-2019 season with PSG was blighted by injury and he courted controversy by lashing out at a supporter after the club suffered a shock defeat in the French Cup final.


Runners step back in time on AlUla’s historic trails

Updated 19 February 2020

Runners step back in time on AlUla’s historic trails

  • Top-ranked athletes came from Saudi Arabia, the US and the Netherlands

ALULA: More than 260 athletes from around the world took part in the recent EcoTrail AlUla, a multi-track running race through the dramatic landscapes of AlUla in Saudi Arabia’s northwest.
Top-ranked athletes came from Saudi Arabia, the US and the Netherlands. The race was staged as part of the second season of the Winter at Tantora festival, organized by the Royal Commission for AlUla to promote the historic site as an exceptional tourist destination for heritage, arts, culture and sports.

Events took place on three different courses — an 83 km track, followed by a 45 km and a 10 km track — with international athletes taking part in each of the races.

In the 10 km course, 139 contestants took part in the competition, with 125 managing to complete the run. Saudi runner Mohammed Madkhali won first place, while Yemeni runner Fares Aman Aldin came in second and another Saudi runner, Meshari Almuhanna, finished third.

In the women’s category, US runner Meredith Byrne won first place, Saudi runner Sarah Abdullatif came in second, and British runner Maureen McConnell finished third.

Ninety athletes took part in the 45 km race, with 85 finishing. Saudi runner Abdulaziz Al-Ghamdi came in first, with Australian Matthew Sudich second and French runner Nicholas Mordelet in third.

In the women’s category, Dutch runner Floortje Rawee came in first, followed by Italian Alessandra Grassi in second and American Natasha Turak third.

The 83 km race featured 37 athletes with only 17 finishing. In the men’s category, US runner Michael Wardian finished first, followed by Pierre Breuer from Belgium in second and Malaysia’s Soonseng Ong third.

In the women’s category, Amy Sproston from the US ranked first, with Ruth Theresia from Indonesia second and American Rachel Bessette third.

EcoTrail AlUla attracted athletes from around the world, most notably the US, UK, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, France, Sweden, the UAE, Malaysia, Singapore, Jordan, Oman, Peru, Poland and Indonesia.

The one-day trail gave visitors the opportunity to become acquainted with AlUla and its distinctive natural, cultural, architectural and historical monuments. The trail is an eye-catching destination for running enthusiasts and jogging clubs, and will encourage people to visit AlUla and Saudi Arabia to take part in a global sporting event that promotes environmentally friendly principles and initiatives.

The race contained several medical care stops and catering stations, and each participant received a number in addition to a welcome gift and a shirt. An inaugural dinner was held to welcome contestants on the night before the race.

EcoTrail AlUla is the first race to occur in the Middle East and one of the most notable sports events of this year’s Winter at Tantora festival. The race was sponsored by STC, Almarai Company, Sabeeka Energy Bar, Whites, and Hussak Adventures. The festival’s latest season also provides a wide range of diverse experiences that meet the needs of all visitors and entertain all tastes, for individuals, groups or families from all walks of life.

The festival began on Dec. 19 and will run until March 7, 2020. Guests of the second season of this year will be able to visit the astonishing historical and heritage sites exclusively, and attend the international musical and artistic performances.