Robinho sentenced to nine years for 2013 sexual assault

Robinho in action for Manchester City against Hull City in 2009

"All legal steps are already being taken in response to this decision".

Brazilian footballer Robinho has been sentenced to nine years in jail after an Italian court found the former Real Madrid, Manchester City and AC Milan player guilty of sexually assaulting a 22-year-old woman in a Milan nightclub in 2013.

The ex-Brazil worldwide, alongside five others, were convicted in Italy this evening for the gang-rape of a 22-year-old Albanian woman.

The 33-year-old is now playing for Atletico Mineiro in Brazil. In line with Italian law, Robinho has the right to various avenues of appeal before the sentence is confirmed.

Robinho's lawyer, Marisa Alija, issued a statement saying that "We clarify that he has already defended himself from these allegations, and insist he had no participation in that episode". Brazil does not extradite its own citizens when they are sentenced in other countries.

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Robinho, 33, started his career with Santos, and as a teenager helped the Peixe to their first Serie A title for 20 years.

Robinho, who has 100 caps for Brazil, joined Manchester City from Real Madrid in 2008 but failed to live up to expectations at City and left the club for Milan after one and a half seasons.

He then went on loan to Brazilian side Santos, before joining Milan.

Robinho had previously been accused of sexual assault while at City in 2009, but was later cleared.

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