Dani Alves sentenced to four years in jail over sexual assault

A Spanish court on Thursday found former Barcelona and Brazil footballer Dani Alves guilty of raping a woman in a Barcelona nightclub, BBC reports.

Alves has been handed a jail sentence of four years and six months.

He had been held on remand at Brians 2 Prison near the Catalan capital since his arrest in January last year.

Alves protested his innocence on February 7 after taking the stand on the last day of his three-day trial at Barcelona’s Audiencia Provincial court.

He admitted to having sex in a toilet at upmarket Barcelona nightclub Sutton December 30 2022 with his 23-year-old female accuser, but insisted it was consensual.

The woman he was today found guilty of raping confirmed Alves had forced himself on her when she gave her evidence in court behind her screen.

A friend who was with her the night of the rape broke down in tears as she recalled how the victim was ‘crying uncontrollably’ after leaving the small bathroom where the incident occured.

State prosecutors had demanded a nine year prison sentence if Alves was convicted and a private prosecutor acting for the victim demanded a 12-year jail term at his trial.

Judicial officials confirmed today: ‘Daniel Alves has been sentenced to four and a half years in prison after being convicted of sexual assault.

‘The court also ordered him to stay away from his victim for nine and a half years and determined he should pay his victim 150,000 euros and pay costs.

‘The sentence says it has been proved the victim didn’t consent and there is proof supporting the victim’s testimony to consider the rape has been proven.’

The fact Alves deposited the compensation he has now been ordered to pay was taken into account as a mitigating factor in determining his sentence.

The three judges said it had been proven Alves ‘grabbed hold of the victim, threw her on the ground and prevented her from moving while he penetrated her, despite her saying ‘no’ and insisting she wanted to leave.’

They said in their 61-page ruling the victim had acted coherently during the investigation and the trial that followed it and nothing in any of her court quizzes had revealed any contradictions.

The judges ruled Alves’ female accuser had gone to the toilet where the sex attack occurred voluntarily.

‘We conclude the complainant went voluntarily to the VIP bathroom area, with the aim of being in a more intimate space with the man she accused of rape.’

But they said, referring to the victim with the initials VVV: ‘After agreeing it with Mrs VVV, Daniel Alves went towards the door next to his table in the nightclub which led to the toilet and went inside.

‘Two minutes afterwards VVV followed.

‘Once there, and although it hasn’t been proved that the accused introduced his penis into the complainant’s mouth or that she voluntarily practiced a sex act on Mr Alves, he tried to penetrate the victim, using his greater strength by throwing her on the ground and hitting her with his knee.

‘The victim asked Daniel Alves to let her leave, telling him she wanted to go, but Mr Alves did not let her.

‘The victim, finding herself in this situation, in that small toilet without any possibility of leaving because Mr Alves was stopping it and in the face of the violent attitude he was demonstrating, became stressed and unable to react.

‘She ended up feeling as if she couldn’t breathe given the situation of anguish and terror she was experiencing.’

Saying it hadn’t been proven either that Alves had tried to practice oral sex on the victim, as it was claimed, the judges added in their written ruling: ‘He used his physical strength to overcome VVV’s opposition, bent her over the toilet and raped her until he ejaculated inside her, without using a condom and without her consent.’

Dani Alves’ lawyer Ines Guardiola said outside court after the footballer was jailed: ‘All I can say at the moment is we are going to appeal the sentence and I still believe in the innocence of Mr Alves. He’s doing okay.’

She added: ‘Obviously four and a half years’ prison is better than nine years or 12 years and I have yet to read the full sentence but I will appeal.’

Alves, who became the oldest player to represent Brazil at the World Cup in December 2022 in Qatar, was ordered to stand trial last November.

Initially it was reported he had been accused of putting his hands down a woman’s underwear inside a toilet in the VIP area of Sutton nightclub before it emerged his victim was saying she had been raped.

He was sacked by Mexican side UNAM Pumas following his arrest in Barcelona at the start of last year after he flew back to the Catalan capital to attend his mother-in-law’s funeral.


He made repeated bail requests after being remanded in jail but they were all turned down, with judges saying his victim’s version of events was coherent and pointing out Alves had changed his story several times as the evidence authorities against him emerged.

Alves claimed before his arrest he had never met his female accuser but ended up backtracking after being held.

In an exclusive interview from his cell in Brians 2 Prison near Barcelona last June with Spanish TV and newspaper reporter Mayka Navarro, he claimed: ‘The only person I have to ask for forgiveness is my wife, Joana Sanz.’

As well as two spells at Barcelona, Alves has played for Seville, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain and Sao Paulo.

He is widely considered as one of the greatest full-backs of all time.

At the start of the year his mum Lucia Alves caused controversy and left herself open to future prosecution by naming and picturing her son’s rape accuser in a social media post she later removed.

She attended his trial, held from February 5 to 7, along with Alves’ brothers.

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