Jenni Hermoso files complaint accusing Luis Rubiales of sexual assault for World Cup kiss
Jenni Hermoso has filed an official complaint with Spanish prosecutors, accusing Spanish football federation president Luis Rubiales of sexual assault after he kissed her during the celebration of Spain’s Women’s World Cup win last month.
Prosecutors announced the complaint on Tuesday, about a week after they invited Hermoso to present her accusation against Rubiales as part of their ongoing investigation into the incident. Rubiales could face criminal charges depending on the outcome of the investigation.
The kiss in question came during the official staged celebration following Spain’s win. When it was Hermoso’s turn, she walked over to Rubiales, who then kissed her full on the lips. Hermoso has said several times since that the kiss was not consensual and that it made her uncomfortable.
Anger and disgust were the primary responses to Rubiales’ kiss. He did apologize the following day in a video, which Hermoso says she declined to appear in despite being asked several times. In fact, Hermoso has said that she and her family had been pressured by the Spanish football federation to show their support for Rubiales.
Hermoso has remained strong, even though Rubiales continues to be defiant. He has insisted that the kiss was consensual despite Hermoso herself disputing that. He has refused to resign in the face of a provisional 90-day suspension, a FIFA investigation and mounting pressure from all directions. His mother even locked herself in a church and went on a hunger strike to protest how her son has been treated by the media.
Meanwhile, Rubiales is running out of defenders who are not related to him. In the aftermath of the kiss, soccer teams from around the world announced their support for Hermoso. Spain’s government is investigating the incident to see if Rubiales tarnished their country’s reputation. The entire coaching staff of the Spain’s women’s national team resigned in protest of his continued employment. Embattled head coach Jorge Vilda was finally fired after he initially supported Rubiales. And the women’s national team announced they will not play again until Rubiales resigns.
No one knows when that might be. But the continuing outcry over the incident and the multiple investigations currently being conducted likely mean that Rubiales’ days as the suspended president of Spain’s football federation are numbered.