Former Barcelona player Dani Alves found guilty of sexual assault

The footballer has been sentenced to four years and six months.

Footballer Dani Alves has been found guilty of sexually assaulting a young woman in a Barcelona nightclub, a Spanish court ruled on Thursday.

The three-judge panel sentenced Alves to four years and six months.

Alves, aged 40, denied any wrongdoing during a trial that took place over three days this month. The decision can be appealed.

The court found Alves sexually assaulted his victim early in the morning of December 31, 2022, when she said he raped her in a bathroom of an upscale Barcelona nightclub.

Prosecutors had sought a nine-year prison sentence for Alves while the lawyers representing his accuser wanted 12 years.

His defence asked for his acquittal, or if found guilty a one-year sentence plus 50,000 euros (£43,000) compensation for the victim.

Alves has been in jail since being detained early last year. His requests for bail were denied because the court considered him a flight risk.

At the peak of his career, the footballer played for several top clubs, including Barcelona, Juventus and Paris St Germain.

He also played for Brazil from 2006 to 2022 and is the nation’s third most-capped player of all times.

His most recent club, Mexican side Pumas UNAM, terminated his contract after the charges were brought against him in January 2023.

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