Leslie Mark Stovall, Mayorga’s attorney, sought to challenge that settlement on the grounds that Mayorga was not sound of mind when she consented to the deal, and the case was moved from state to federal court in 2019. But Stovall’s case relied upon “leaked and stolen documents detailing attorney-client discussions between Ronaldo and his lawyers,” according to the Associated Press.
Federal judge Jennifer Dorsey wrote in her ruling Friday that “the procurement and continued use of these documents was bad faith,” denying Stovall’s bid to force Ronaldo to pay more than $25 million in damages based on allegations that Ronaldo or his associates violated a nondisclosure agreement by allowing news about it to appear in European media.
Those allegations stem from the 2017 publication of an article by German news outlet Der Spiegel that detailed the sexual assault allegations and settlement. Der Spiegel said it acquired documents from the case through the website Football Leaks, which has been described as the “WikiLeaks of football.” Before filing the complaint, Stovall reached out to Football Leaks creator Rui Pinto seeking documents related to the accusation against Ronaldo, according to the Athletic. Months later, Stovall received the confidential documents.
Ronaldo’s attorney in Las Vegas, Peter Christiansen, addressed the decision to AP, saying, “We have maintained the action was brought in bad faith. The outright dismissal of [Mayorga]’s case should give all who follow this matter renewed confidence in the judicial process in this country while dissuading those who seek to undermine it.”