- Three Real Madrid youth players have been arrested by Spanish authorities for sharing a private video.
- Following a court ruling, the players—who are not minors—were later released.
- The three were reportedly held inside the Real Madrid sports complex in Madrid, according to the police.
Three Real Madrid young players were detained by Spanish police on Thursday for allegedly circulating an explicit video that involved a minor. The accusations fuelled the already-flaming debate over misogyny and macho behaviour in Spanish football.
The players—who are not minors—were subsequently released after a court ruling and after the data on their mobile devices was seized, according to a statement from the police.
The case began with a complaint from a 16-year-old girl’s mother in the Canary Islands. The police claimed that despite the girl’s claim that the occurrence was consensual and the availability of a recorded incident, the recording took place in June without the girl’s consent. It was only recently that she had learned of its existence.
The arrests take place in the context of charges against former football federation president Luis Rubiales, who is accused of publicly kissing Jenni Hermoso, Spain’s World Cup winner, last month. A significant wave of outrage was caused by this action, like the Me Too campaign.
After weeks of refusing to retire, Rubiales announced his resignation on Sunday. He is scheduled to appear before a court on Friday. He insists that they both consented to the kiss.
Police reported that a fourth player was under investigation and that the three had been held at the Real Madrid sports complex in Madrid. Two of those detained are members of the third team, while one is a reserve player.
Real Madrid’s statement only made reference to the four members of the young team who had been interrogated by police “in connection with a complaint about an alleged release of a private video via WhatsApp” messaging app.
According to the El Confidencial newspaper, the player on the third team who reportedly recorded his intimate encounter with the 16-year-old victim is the primary focus of the investigation.
According to a police spokesperson, all three are suspected of committing a crime called “disclosing confidential information of an intimate nature” under Spanish law.