Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar has vehemently denied a rape allegation being levelled at him to Sao Paulo police, following claims from a Brazilian woman he met in Paris.
Police in Brazil confirmed to Goal on Saturday that there is a complaint against Neymar, but would not discuss details of the case, which was filed on May 31.
Brazilian outlet UOL was the first to report the rape accusations and claim the report to police is being kept confidential.
Neymar’s father suggested on Saturday night that the WhatsApp messages his son exchanged with the alleged victim, whom was flown into Paris on May 15, would be published in an attempt to prove his innocence to the public.
“I know that my son can be accused of many things, but I know the boy that he is, the man that he is, the son of a father and a mother,” Neymar Sr. said. “We will push for justice to be served as quickly as possible.”
Reports in Brazil claim Neymar paid for her travel and met her at Sofitel Paris Arc de Triomphe. The 27-year-old says he met her at the hotel but contests the serious claims from the unnamed woman, who is protected by victim anonymity.
“I’m being charged of rape,” Neymar said in anpublished on Sunday morning that has already been viewed more than 10 million times. “It’s a heavy word, it’s a very strong thing, but it’s what’s happening right now.
“I was taken by surprise. It was very bad, very sad to hear that. You know my character, you know what I mean, you know I would never do something like that.
“But I’ve been exposed to it and I’m here to make a face of it, because I know that any news with my name involves a lot of things, it makes a very loud noise, and everybody keeps wanting my statement, and what happened was totally the opposite of what they say.
“From now on I will expose everything, I will expose all the conversation I had with the girl, all our moments, which are intimate, but it is necessary to be open, it is necessary to expose to prove that nothing really happened at all.”
Neymar shared conversations that claim the two began speaking in March and continue May 15. His messages allege that she invites the former Barcelona star back to the hotel on May 16.
The alleged victim reportedly returned to Sao Paulo on May 17 before taking her case to a police station that specialises in women’s defence on May 31.
“What happened that day was a relationship between a man and a woman, within four walls,” the PSG player claimed. “Something happens with every couple, and the next day nothing happened.
“We kept chatting, she asked me for a souvenir for her son, and I was going to take it, and well… now I am surprised by these claims.
“It’s very bad, very sad. This not only hurts me, but like my whole family, because not only denigrating my image is bad, but what I am, who I am, the nature I have, the character I have.”
An official statement released by Neymar’s PR team alleges the player was the victim of an extortion attempt before the allegations came to light on Saturday night.
“Although he was surprised by the news, the facts were already known by the player and his staff, considering that a few days ago he was a victim of attempted extortion, practiced by a lawyer from the city of Sao Paulo, who, according to his version, represented the interests of the alleged victim,” the statement said.
“The athlete’s lawyers were immediately notified and have since taken all relevant steps.
“Faced with the unfortunate, illegal and outrageous allegations, we completely repudiate the unfair accusations and, above all, the exposure in the press of an extremely negative situation.
“All evidence of attempted extortion and non-rape shall be submitted to the police in a timely manner.”
Neymar is currently in Brazil getting ready for the Copa America finals in June and July with the national team.