It has been revealed that Mario Balotelli filed a complaint for attempted extortion after being accused of rape by a young woman.
She was reportedly underage at the time and Italian prosecutors have set a date for a preliminary hearing. The latest revelation comes as Italian dailies including Il Giornale di Vicenza and Corriere della Sera have published bombshell details about the case.
The former Manchester City star, who currently plays for Serie A club Brescia, made international headlines after being accused of rape by a young woman who was reportedly 16 at the time.
According to reports, the events allegedly took place in 2017 when Balotelli was playing for Nice, where they reportedly met.
The alleged victim was 16 and was originally from Vicenza in the Veneto region of Italy, but her name has been withheld due to local privacy laws.
She allegedly told the Italian footballer that she was 18, according to local Italian daily newspaper Il Giornale di Vicenza.
The two are then said to have had a sexual relationship before she allegedly revealed that she was in fact younger.
A few weeks later, the girl’s lawyer is alleged to have demanded 100,000 EUR (83,700 GBP) from the footballer and threatened to go to the police to file charges of “sexual violence.”
Balotelli, who helped Manchester City win the Premier League in 2012, then reportedly filed a complaint on 22nd December 2017 for “attempted extortion” according to Italian media and French newspaper Nice-Matin in its Friday edition (today).
According to local Italian daily newspaper Il Giornale di Vicenza, Balotelli, assisted by the Vicenza lawyer Vittorio Rigo, they did not give into blackmail, and went on the “counter-attack.”
According to the Corriere del Veneto, a preliminary hearing in the investigation for attempted extortion is now scheduled for 24th March 2020.
The young woman filed a complaint on 15th January 2018 for rape of a minor, according to the same daily. Balotelli was reportedly first cleared after a police probe but the young woman’s newly appointed lawyer, named as Elisa Romeo, insists he still faces potential criminal action.
After his recent match against Juventus – which Juventus won against Brescia 2-0 – Balotelli was quoted in local media as saying: “If someone blackmails you and you pay, it means that you have dirty conscience.”
He added: “I have not done anything wrong and I am not willing to pay for not letting a lie on my account appear in the newspapers. Time brings out the truth and there are good journalists who don’t buy fake news.”
According to Il Giornale di Vicenza, now the Prosecutor of Vicenza has sent notice to the young woman’s lawyer that the investigation into charges of attempted extortion is now closed, while the Venice Prosecutor’s Office has done the same with the young woman, who reportedly resides in the Bassano area.
The prosecutors are preparing to ask for the trial of both. Mario Balotelli could become a civil party, to request damages, reports said. Both the lawyer and the girl, in the meantime, have already submitted defensive memoirs claiming to have acted correctly, and in compliance with the law.
Italian daily Corriere della Sera has since published a report claiming that audio of the phone calls between the girl and Balotelli at the time reveals that he asked her to take the pill after their encounter.
The prosecutor in Brescia is investigating allegations of sexual violence. The story provided to the carabinieri on 15th January 2018 is detailed: on the night of 26th July 26 2017, it is alleged that Balotelli forced her to have sex twice, at the ‘High Club’ in Nice and on the local private beach.
According to Corriere della Sera, the girl allegedly said: “I asked him to stop but he continued. Only after I repeated it several times did it stop.”
The daily also report that the complaint also contains a detail that had not emerged so far; the complainant claims: “The next day when I was still in shock, I was contacted by him, and he asked me to go to a pharmacy as soon as possible to take a contraceptive pill. I indulged him… I was very shaken and frightened.”
Still according to the daily, she reportedly said: “I am a minor, the medicine was purchased by a friend of mine who was already 18 years old”.
She allegedly also said: “I sent the photo of the pill I had ingested” because Balotelli “asked me to do it”.
In another conversation, still according to the daily, the footballer reportedly said: “If I hurt you there with that act, it wasn’t to hurt you. Maybe I didn’t realise it, so if that’s the case, I apologise but I certainly didn’t force you.”
According to the daily, in other parts of the audio, he reportedly said: “So when I saw that it hurt you, I stopped.”
This was in response to her saying “I told you to stop, to stop, to stop and I could not do it.”
Corriere also indicated that the footballer initially seemed willing to pay for the girl’s silence to the tune of 30,000 EUR (25,100 GBP), based on the audio conversations between Balotelli and his lawyer.
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