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Football Star, Dani Alves Released After paying €1 Million Bail

Football Star, Dani Alves Released After paying €1 Million Bail

Former Brazil international footballer Dani Alves, convicted of rape in Spain in February, has paid his bail of one million euros and can leave jail pending his appeal, a court announced on Monday.

Dani Alves, renowned as one of the world’s most decorated footballers, was sentenced last month to four-and-a-half years in jail for raping a young woman in the VIP bathroom of a Barcelona nightclub in the early hours of December 31, 2022.

Following a surprise move, a Barcelona court granted his request for provisional release last Wednesday, stipulating conditions that included posting bail of a million euros ($1.08 million), surrendering his Spanish and Brazilian passports, remaining in the country, and presenting himself to court on a weekly basis during his appeal process.

It took Alves until Monday to present the necessary funds, which led to his continued detention while his entourage endeavored to raise the money. The court confirmed the deposit of his bail in a statement, paving the way for his imminent release from the Brians 2 prison, northwest of Barcelona.

TV crews gathered outside the prison premises to capture the moment of Alves’ release, which is expected to occur in the coming hours. The football star had been in custody since his arrest in January 2023, with concerns raised about his potential flight risk. However, Brazil’s policy of not extraditing its citizens sentenced in other countries meant Alves could not be extradited.

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While Alves’ release on bail has been met with anticipation by his supporters, it has also sparked criticism and controversy. Public prosecutors and the victim’s lawyer, Ester Garcia, have appealed the decision to grant Alves bail, expressing concerns about the message it sends to society.

Garcia, addressing reporters last week, stated, “This sends the message that there is justice for the rich, and even if there is a conviction if you pay bail there are no criminal consequences.” She emphasized her client’s feelings of outrage, despondency, and frustration in the wake of the decision.

During the trial, the victim testified behind a screen to protect her identity, recounting how Alves had forcefully compelled her to engage in sexual intercourse in a private bathroom of the nightclub despite her pleas to be released, causing her immense anguish and terror, according to prosecutors.

In defense, Alves’ lawyers argued that there had been “sexual tension” between Alves and the victim while they were dancing at the nightclub, suggesting that the victim had been complicit. However, the court’s decision, outlined in a 61-page document, emphasized that any prior interaction did not imply consent to subsequent actions.

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As Dani Alves prepares to navigate the legal process during his appeal, the case continues to attract widespread attention, highlighting issues of justice, privilege, and accountability within society.

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