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Former Barcelona football superstar Dani Alves posts bail amid appeal of rape conviction

The footballer has been in prison since January 20, 2023 for the rape of a young woman in the bathrooms of a booth at the Sutton nightclub in Barcelona

Fotografía de archivo (05/02/2024), del exjugador del FC Barcelona Dani Alves.
Fotografía de archivo (05/02/2024), del exjugador del FC Barcelona Dani Alves. | EFE/ Alberto Estévez

March 25, 2024 8:25am

Updated: March 25, 2024 9:07am

Former Barcelona footballer Dani Alves posted a million euros in bail to a Barcelona court last Wednesday pending the resolution of his appeal that follows his recent conviction for raping a young woman in 2022.

Alves' defense team deposited the million euros of bail this Monday in the account of section 21a of the Barcelona court, fulfilling his legal requirement to leave the Brians 2 prison, where the football superstar was incarcerated for the past 14 months.

He was also ordered by the panel of three judges who approved his bail to turn in his Spanish and Brazilian passports.

The 40-year-old father of two is now expected to be released from prison for the first time in 14 months at 5 p.m. local time in Spain.

Alves was imprisoned Jan. 20, 2023 for the rape of a young woman, which prosecutors say took place in the bathroom stall at the Sutton nightclub in Barcelona in the early hours of Dec. 30, 2022.

After a trial in Barcelona, a Spanish court sentenced him Feb. 22, 2023 to four and a half years in prison.

Section 21a of the Barcelona Court agreed last Wednesday to allow the former Brazilian soccer player to leave prison after posting a million-euro bail, while his appeal is resolved.

For its part, the Barcelona Provincial Prosecutor's Office has appealed Alves's release, saying the victim's lawyer was planning to do the same.

The Public Prosecutor's Office said last Friday it considers the risk of the footballer fleeing “even more intense in view of the fact that Mr. Alves has been sentenced as the perpetrator of a crime of sexual assault to a sentence of 4 years and 6 months in prison.”

The former soccer player's lawyer went to the Brians 2 prison at midday this Monday after posting bail, in the midst of strong media expectation at the doors of the prison, where dozens of media await the release of the ex-footballer.

Alves raised the money after almost a week of facing several hardships in raising the money, surprising some in the media with his presumed financial resources.

Alves reportedly had problems accessing some of his money as a result of problems with his ex-wife, Dinorah Santana. The football superstar was reportedly still married to Santana when he met his next wife, Joana Sanz, who originally planned to for divorce after Alves admitted to having consensual sex with the alleged victim.

She has since held off on her divorce plans and testified on her husband’s behalf during the trial.

The high bail amount imposed—one of the highest recorded in Spanish courts—also reportedly faced transfer complexities, and Alves’ inability to secure the bond when it was expected kept him locked up over the weekend.

Alves originally sought help from the family of his former Barça teammate Neymar Da Silva, who at the time boasted he would pay a 150,000 euros for victim compensation, but that changed last week after the father of the footballer faced political pressure in Brazil.

Alves is expected to receive 9.2 euros after his tax lawyer won four cases against Spain’s main tax agency.

ADN America contributed to this report.

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