Cristiano Ronaldo faces stiff punishment for hugging and kissing Iranian painter. According to TMZ, the football star could be given 99 lashes for the affectionate gesture.
On September 19, Ronaldo traveled to Iran with the team to participate in the Asian Champions League match between Al Nasser and Persepolis.
Before the game, fans greeted the star player and gave him gifts.
According to TMZ, one of the gifts came from painter Fatima Hamimi, who uses her feet to create art due to her disability.
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Hamimi designed two stunning paintings for Ronaldo and he expressed his gratitude with a kiss on her forehead.
While the act may seem innocent, Iran considers touching another woman an act of adultery if you are in a relationship. TMZ notes that Ronaldo is dating his long-time girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez.
The New York Post reported that several lawsuits were filed against the 38-year-old star following the incident.
The New York Post cited reports in Iran that the judge may forgive him if “these actions go unpunished or if Ronaldo shows remorse.”
This latest controversy comes as Ronaldo is dealing with legal troubles.
Last week, Ronaldo’s lawyers returned to court on October 4 to launch legal proceedings over the hush money Ronaldo paid in 2010 to a woman who accused him of raping her in Las Vegas.
According to the Associated Press, the woman’s lawyer said Ronaldo owes her millions more than the $370,000 he previously paid because someone in his camp violated a confidentiality agreement. The football star’s lawyers insist the sex was consensual, the agreement was valid and the terms should remain confidential.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.This story was reported from Washington, D.C.