A court in Spain has ordered the Brazilian footballer Dani Alves to be remanded in custody after he was arrested over a sexual assault allegation.
A Barcelona judge took the step after questioning the 39-year-old player regarding “events that allegedly took place at a nightclub,” the court said in a statement on Friday.
Earlier, Alves was taken into custody after being summoned to a Barcelona police station and was then sent before the judge.
The charge of sexual assault in Spain can mean anything from unsolicited and unwanted sexual groping to rape.
The alleged victim told police the Brazilian footballer and former Barcelona star touched her under her underwear without her consent at a Barcelona nightclub on December 30.
Accompanied by her friends, the woman reported the incident to the nightclub’s security staff, who then alerted the police.
Officers arrived at the scene and took a statement from the woman. She filed an official complaint for sexual assault on January 2.
Alves told Antena 3 in an interview earlier this month that he was at the club with other people but he denied any such behaviour.
“I was dancing and having a good time without invading anyone’s space,” he said. “I don’t know who this lady is … How could I do that to a woman? No.”
Alves is one of world football’s most successful players, winning major titles with several elite clubs, including Barcelona, Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain.
He currently plays with Mexican club Pumas.