Diego Maradona rape case: A 37-year-old Cuban woman accused Argentinian idol and late footballer Diego Maradona of violence and abuse, including rape and holding her against here will. The survivor, who was previously in a relationship with Maradona when she was a minor, made her accusations at a press conference in Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina.
The woman has come forward right ahead of Maradona’s first death anniversary, on November 25. The footballer died last year at the age of 60 after undergoing brain surgery on a blood clot. He was battling cocaine and alcohol addiction. According to Alvarez Rego, she chose to speak out after so many years to set “order to balance some of the stories being told in a TV series about Maradona as a run-up to his death anniversary.”
Rego, mother of two, in a press conference, recounted her relationship with Maradona, which allegedly lasted between four and five years. She alleged that during the relationship she was subjected to abuse. According to Rego, in 2001 Maradona had made a trip to Buenos Aires, during which he allegedly held her in a hotel for weeks against her will. During that time, she was banned from going out alone and was forced to undergo a breast augmentation operation. Not just that, Maradona allegedly raped her once at their home in Havana.
Although Rego has not filed an official complaint, she has given all the evidence to an Argentina prosecutor this week. The pieces of evidence are in connection with the complaint filed by the Argentina non-government organisation (NGO) Foundation for Peace. Their complaint is related to deprivation of liberty, forced servitude, assault and human trafficking.
During the press conference, Rego said, “I have done what I had to do, the rest I leave to the courts,” she added, “I achieved my goal: to say what happened to me, to prevent it from happening to others, or at least so that other girls feel the strength, the courage to speak up.”
The allegations were denied by five members of the Maradona entourage via their lawyers and one of the members have filed a counter-complaint against the NGO.
This is not the first time Maradona’s name has been mentioned in an abuse or violence case. The coach and the world-renowned player was also involved in a domestic violence case. Caught on video in 2014, he was seen slapping his wife, Olivia, however, he denied the allegations. In another incident, the footballer was seen hurling abuse at his wife and grabbing her by the neck in a flight.
On the day he died, a Spanish footballer from third division women’s club Viajes InterRias FF, Paula Dapena refused to take part in a minute’s silence on Maradona’s death. “As soon as I found out that there would be an act in his memory I refused to observe the minute’s silence for a rapist, paedophile and an abuser,” reported Spanish media outlet AS.