Rubiales hit with monthly court appearances and travel restriction

Luis Rubiales is under investigation in a corruption probe
Luis Rubiales is under investigation in a corruption probeReuters
Luis Rubiales, the disgraced former Spanish soccer federation (RFEF) chief, will have to appear before a local court in Madrid at least once a month and will need to ask permission to leave the country, a Spanish judge ordered on Monday.

The decision was announced after Rubiales, who is under investigation in a corruption probe for allegedly committing an offence of unfair administration and another of business corruption, testified earlier in the morning.

Rubiales has been ordered "to appear before the judicial system once a month and as many times as he is required by the court". He will also have to include the dates of departure and return and the address where he intends to stay while abroad whenever he plans to leave the country.

A Madrid court has been investigating since June 2022 whether Rubiales committed a crime of improper management when the RFEF agreed with former Barcelona player Gerard Pique's Kosmos firm to relocate the Spanish Super Cup to Saudi Arabia in a deal worth a reported 120 million euros (£102m).

The former RFEF president denied any wrongdoing in the Saudi deal after his testimony on Monday.

"I am convinced that justice will eventually be done. There has never, ever been any money received in an irregular manner under my watch. There has never been any irregular bidding (for the Super Cup). In short, we have always acted with the utmost excellence and in the pursuit of legality," Rubiales told reporters on Monday.

"I have answered all the questions I have been asked, I have been cross-examined, I have been here, I think, for more than four hours. If I have to come again because the honourable judge says so, I will be here to help. I am the one who is most interested in clearing everything up."

Rubiales was in the Dominican Republic for more than two months on what he described as a business trip when a Spanish judge ordered searches of offices and properties linked to the probe into alleged corruption, improper management and money laundering during his tenure as president of the RFEF.

He returned to Spain earlier in April, when he was informed by police that he was a suspect and told to appear before a local court.

Police had searched the RFEF's headquarters outside Madrid and Rubiales' apartment in the southern Spanish city of Granada on March 20, as well as a soccer stadium in Seville. Seven people have been arrested so far.

In September, he resigned as RFEF president and a month later was banned by FIFA from all football activities for three years for allegedly kissing player Jenni Hermoso on the lips without consent after Spain's Women's World Cup triumph.

Rubiales argued it was consensual and has denied any wrongdoing but prosecutors are seeking a two-and-a-half-year prison sentence after charging him with sexual assault and coercion.

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