Dani Alves Granted Conditional Release from Jail Pending Appeal

Dani Alves, the former Barcelona and Brazil footballer who was sentenced to four-and-a-half years in prison for rape, has been granted conditional release from jail after paying bail of €1 million (£853,000).

Alves, who has been held in pre-trial detention since January 2023, was allowed to leave jail pending his appeal after making the required bail payment. The court in Spain imposed several conditions for his release, including surrendering both his Brazilian and Spanish passports to prevent him from leaving Spain. Additionally, he must appear before the court weekly and is subject to a restraining order preventing him from approaching the victim.

The decision to release Alves pending appeal has sparked controversy, with a lawyer for the rape victim criticizing it as “a scandal.” The lawyer, Ester Garcia, denounced the decision as “a justice [system] for the rich” and vowed to lodge an appeal.

During the trial, prosecutors argued that Alves had lured the victim into a bathroom in a Barcelona nightclub and raped her despite her repeated requests to leave. The court found that Alves had forcibly raped the woman, rejecting his claims of consensual sex. Alves had changed his testimony multiple times during the trial.

Despite the conditional release, Alves still faces the possibility of serving his prison sentence if his appeal is unsuccessful. The decision to release him pending appeal was not unanimous, with one judge dissenting.

Alves, who has enjoyed a successful football career with Barcelona and the Brazilian national team, will continue to await the outcome of his legal proceedings under the conditions set by the court.

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