Italian court to begin ruling on Robinho’s appeal against nine-year gang rape conviction TODAY… and former Brazil and Manchester City star will have Santos contract terminated if it proves unsuccessful
- Robinho has been sentenced to nine years in prison for taking part in a gang rape
- The former Manchester City and Brazil forward is appealing the decision
- A court in Milan will sit on Thursday, but the 36-year-old will not be present
- If unsuccessful, his club Santos have vowed to terminate his playing contract
A court in Milan will hear the appeal by Robinho against his gang rape conviction following an attack on an Albanian women in a nightclub back in 2013.
The former Manchester City forward was sentenced in absentia to nine years in prison in 2017, but has protested his innocence ever since, and his sentence is currently suspended on account of his appeal.
Now a panel of three female judges will listen to his lawyers on Thursday to decide whether the conviction should be quashed.
Former Manchester City star Robinho is appealing his nine-year sentence for his involvement in a 2013 gang rape in Italy
The 36-year-old has had his contract with Santos suspended in the build up to the hearing, after their sponsor Orthopride ended their relationship with the club over his new deal.
And club president Orlando Rollo has confirmed the player will be sacked if the decision is upheld – though he will be allowed to continue playing if acquitted.
He has had issues at other clubs, too, as a result of the original sentencing. He played for Atletico Mineiro just three days after the decision was passed in 2017, bringing protests from fans, including one that told the club: ‘Your silence is violent. We don’t accept rapists.’
And while at Istanbul Basaksehir, he was omitted from a European squad for a trip to Rome, for fear that the Brazilian might be detained.
In Italy, no prison sentence is enforced until all avenues of appeal have been exhausted.
Robinho’s contract at Santos has been suspended as appeals his conviction for rape in Italy
However, even if he is found guilty, it appears highly unlikely that he will ever be incarcerated given the Brazilian constitution. It states that no natural born citizen may be extradited. However Brazilian law states that he may still face punishment in his home country if the crime committed in Italy is also considered a crime there, which in this case it is.
Robinho has maintained his innocence and recently gave an interview on the subject.
In a recent sit down with Brazil outlet UOL, he admitted he had come into contact with the victim, but insisted the situation was consensual.
Robinho was playing for Milan at the time of the incident at the Sio Cafe back in 2013
‘A girl approached me, we started to have contact with her consent and mine too… then I went home,’ he said.
Robinho said that, after leaving, his friends stayed with the accuser and had consensual sex with her, before insisting that he cannot speak for them.
He maintained his only regret was cheating on his wife, Vivian.
Robinho was playing for Milan at the time of the incident. His friend Ricardo Falco is also appealing his conviction for the incident at Sio Cafe seven years ago.
Robinho said his only regret was cheating on his wife of eleven years, Vivian (pictured)