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Cristiano Ronaldo Finally Served with Lawsuit ... In Rape Case

6/14/2019 12:57 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

A pretty significant development in the Cristiano Ronaldo alleged rape lawsuit -- TMZ Sports has learned the soccer star has been served with the court papers and the battle is now underway. 

Remember, the accuser Kathryn Mayorga recently withdrew her lawsuit from state court in Nevada to focus on the lawsuit in federal court, mostly because state court laws were making it hard for her legal team to serve Ronaldo with the court docs. 

And, just days after making the move, Mayorga's team had success serving CR7 -- which means the case can now move forward. 

In fact, Ronaldo's legal team has already responded to the lawsuit with court docs of their own in which they ask the judge for permission to file a new 46-page document which will presumably lay out their argument for the court to throw out the case. 

As we previously reported, Mayorga claims Ronaldo raped her in a Las Vegas hotel room back in 2009 after partying together at a nightclub. 

She had initially filed a police report describing the alleged crime -- but didn't identify Ronaldo by name.

In her original lawsuit, Mayorga says she later accepted a $375,000 payment in exchange for her silence -- but now, she wants that agreement voided.

The Las Vegas Metro Police Dept. reopened the case -- but so far, no charges have been brought against the soccer star.

Ronaldo has previously denied the allegations -- saying back in 2018, "Rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in."

"Keen as I may be to clear my name, I refuse to feed the media spectacle created by people seeking to promote themselves at my expense."

Kellen Winslow Jr. Will Be Retried On 8 Remaining Counts In Rape Case

6/14/2019 11:16 AM PDT
Breaking News

Kellen Winslow Jr. will be retried on the 8 remaining counts that weren't decided by the jury in his rape case, officials say. 

Remember, the ex-NFL star was convicted of 3 of the 12 total charges, including 1 charge of felony forcible rape. He was found not guilty of 1 count of lewd conduct. 

But, the jury had deadlocked on the 8 remaining charges stemming from allegations he raped 2 additional women and exposed his genitals to 2 others. 

Now, prosecutors have announced they're taking another swing at the 8 remaining charges -- with a retrial set to begin later this year. Jury selection begins in Sept. 

Because of his rape conviction last week ... Winslow is now facing up to 9 years in prison -- but if he's found guilty of the rest of the charges against him, he could face up to LIFE in prison.

Winslow's attorney asked the judge to release his client from custody with a GPS-tracking device -- but the judge shot that request down hard. He'll remain behind bars indefinitely. 

As we previously reported, 35-year-old Winslow was arrested back in June 2018 after officials say he kidnapped and raped 2 transient women in 2 separate incidents (one in March and another in May).

A 3rd woman later stepped forward and also claimed Winslow raped her 15 years ago while she was unconscious.

Kellen was also accused of exposing himself to two other women in separate incidents over the past year as well.

All of Winslow's accusers testified during his trial -- which began on May 20 -- but Kellen did NOT take the stand.

Cuba Gooding Jr. Hand on Accuser in Surveillance Video from Bar

6/13/2019 3:42 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Cuba Gooding Jr. definitely touched the thigh and breast of the woman accusing him of groping -- it's clear in this surveillance video obtained by TMZ -- but his attorneys seem to be interpreting the video much differently from police.

Around 10:15 PM on Sunday, Gooding and his GF, Claudine De Niro, were sitting on a couch in the Magic Hour Rooftop Lounge in NYC ... when the accuser sat down next to them. Almost immediately you see Gooding reach over Claudine and place his hand on the woman's left thigh.

A few seconds later his hand moves up to her breast, and the accuser puts her hand on his. What happens next is open to interpretation -- she either pushes his hand back toward him, or he pulls her hand to his mouth and kisses it.

Another man then walks over and stands in front of the group. He puts his hands on the shoulders of Gooding and the accuser, leans over and appears to be talking to the entire group.

Things get a little weird then ... as the man gyrates, drawing attention to his crotch. It appears Gooding and his GF playfully paw at his crotch. The guy also takes a drink away from Gooding. A few more people join the group, and everyone's casually chatting for a few more minutes. They all walk away -- separately but in the same direction -- about 3 minutes after the initial touching. There's no argument. 

However, about 30 minutes later ... Cuba and Claudine were downstairs lounging on a couch and making out. A man, who we're told works security for the bar, was standing next to the couch when the accuser approached him and started arguing.

We've blurred her face to protect her identity, but she appears to say, "Yes, he did." She repeated that after the security guard shook his head. It's unclear if Cuba heard their conversation, but he got up, stumbled and then walked right past the accuser and left.

Claudine and the security guard followed right behind him. 

As we reported, Gooding was arrested Thursday and booked for misdemeanor forcible touching and sexual abuse in the third degree. His attorney, Mark Heller, told us Wednesday he saw "no criminality" on Cuba's part in the video ... something he repeated after the arrest. 

We called Heller about this post, but he declined to comment. 

Cuba himself spoke on Tuesday in L.A. and told us he believed the surveillance video would show "what really happened, and that's the most important thing."

David Ortiz Shooter Speaks Out From Cell ... He Wasn't My Target!

6/14/2019 8:10 AM PDT
Breaking News

The man who shot MLB legend David Ortiz issued a desperate statement from his jail cell Thursday -- admitting he pulled the trigger ... but claiming Big Papi was NOT the man he was trying to kill. 

25-year-old Rolfi Ferreira Cruz peeked his face out through bars in the Dominican Republic to address the hoards of reporters crowded outside the jail ... and made the shocking comments. 

"It wasn't supposed to be David," Rolfi said in Spanish from behind a barred window ... explaining it was the color of David's clothing that confused him.

You can also hear another man in the cell -- presumably another suspect in the case -- telling Rolfi in Spanish, "Tell them it wasn't meant for David."

Cruz did NOT reveal who the intended target was -- only suggesting he was sent to the Dial Bar on Sunday to kill another man who was dressed like Ortiz that night.

So far, at least 6 people have been arrested in the attempted murder plot -- and cops are still searching for other suspects ... including Luis Alfredo Rivas-Clase, who is also a suspect in a 2018 shooting in Pennsylvania. 

Officials still have not revealed a possible motive for the attack. 

Surveillance footage of the incident show 2 men -- including Cruz -- rolling up to the bar on a motorcycle. Cruz walks right up to Ortiz and shoots him in the back before trying to make a getaway. 

The motorcycle crashed and the suspects tried to flee -- but one man was stopped and beaten by bystanders

As for Ortiz ... his wife, Tiffany, says he's been able to sit up and take steps this week ... adding, "He continues to heal and make progress."

Celebrity Gamer OMGitsfirefoxx Sued for Allegedly Gaming Her Lawyer

6/14/2019 7:04 AM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Celebrity gamer Sonja Reid -- aka OMGitsfirefoxx -- makes a living firing shots in virtual reality but in real life ... she's under fire for allegedly stiffing her lawyers.

The law firm McPherson LLP is suing Reid claiming the former client bailed on her legal bills. She hired the firm in February of last year to get a restraining order against one or more alleged stalkers that had been sending her threatening messages.

According to the law firm, it gathered tons of evidence which led to LAPD search warrants targeting Facebook, Instagram and others ... to unearth the identity of the bad guys. 

Things went south just a month after Reid hired the firm, because the lawyers weren't getting paid. The tab is now $41,570.54.

McPherson claims Reid hired another lawyer ... and only offered to pay around 18% of the $41k bill.

Reid, btw, is one of the biggest celebrity gamers in the world ... with nearly 1 million followers on Twitch, the game streaming platform. She has nearly 2 million followers on Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

We've reached out to Reid, so far no word back.

R. Kelly Ex-Wife Savagely Burns King of R&B Del Taco's Hiring If Ya Can't Pay Me Child $upport

6/13/2019 2:53 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

Can you picture R. Kelly working the register in a red shirt and an apron at Del Taco? His ex-wife can ... if that's what it takes to dig himself out of a child support hole.

Drea Kelly and her daughter, Buku Abi -- who are both on "Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta" -- joined "TMZ Live" Thursday and pretty much she said she doesn't give a damn what kinda job Kelly has to land to meet his legal obligations ... so long as he once and for all wipes his debts clean.

As we first reported ... Drea asked the court for a hard and fast deadline for Kelly to pay her the $32k he owes. Kelly's camp previously insisted the money owed is interest and not back child support ... but we've learned only $11,500 of it is interest and the rest is for unpaid child support and educational expenses.

Check out the clip ... Drea suggests the fast food joint for the King of R&B.

Kelly, of course, has hired an army of lawyers for his mounting legal troubles, which can't be cheap. This is on top of back child support he's already ponied up ... to the tune of $161,633. That money, we were told, came from a benefactor. So, you can see why Drea's worried.

We also asked Buku if Kelly not paying up has affected her schooling. Watch ... she schools her father on the meaning of responsibility. 

David Ortiz Attack New Video Shows The Shooting ... And Motorcycle Crash

6/13/2019 2:56 PM PDT
Breaking News

Dominican Republic prosecutors have released new video that shows a different angle of a man shooting David Ortiz in the back ... as well as the motorcycle crash that followed the attack.

Prosecutors say 25-year-old Rolfi Ferreira Cruz and several others were paid around $8,000 to try to kill Big Papi in the D.R. last Sunday night.

Officials say the plan involved two cars and a motorcycle ... and they allege the new video they released late Wednesday shows the whole scene.

You can see in the vid ... two men arrive on the scene riding the same motorcycle, when one gets off near the nightclub that Ortiz is partying at.

The guy casually strolls up the sidewalk ... and then pulls out a gun and fires on the Red Sox legend's back. He then takes off, and gets back on the motorcycle with another man.

But, the new video shows the two men crashed to the pavement just yards away from the shooting ... with one of the men able to flee the scene.

Of course, the other man wasn't able to make a break for it ... getting caught by bystanders and then beaten to a pulp.

D.R. officials say they've arrested six men total in the plot to kill Ortiz so far ... and say there is still at least one man on the run.

As for Ortiz ... his wife, Tiffany, said in a statement Thursday, "David remains in guarded condition in the surgical intensive care following his second surgery. He continues to heal and make progress."

"David will continue to recover in the ICU and future updates on his condition will be provided when necessary."

Cuba Gooding Jr. Cuffed in NYC Charged in Groping Case

6/13/2019 1:15 PM PDT
Breaking News

4:48 PM PT -- Cuba was also charged with sexual abuse in the third degree.

1:11 PM PT -- Cuba was just escorted out of the building by cops.

12:30 PM PT -- Cuba's attorney, Mark Heller, just spoke claiming his client is totally innocent. Heller says he's analyzed more than 2 hours of video from the night and nothing shows him commit a crime. 

11:45 AM PT -- Law enforcement sources tell us Cuba has officially been charged with one count of misdemeanor forcible touching.

Cuba Gooding Jr. is under arrest for allegedly groping a woman in a Manhattan bar ... after following through with his plan to surrender to NYPD.

Cuba turned himself in Thursday afternoon to the Manhattan Special Victim's Unit. He arrived with with his attorney, Mark Heller ... and he's expected to be booked for forcible touching, a misdemeanor.

Heller told TMZ, on Wednesday, he had seen surveillance video from the Magic Hour Rooftop Bar and Lounge, and felt it showed "no criminality" on Cuba's part. As a result, he said Cuba might not surrender. Obviously, something changed. 

As we reported ... a woman called 911 early Monday morning alleging the Oscar winner touched her breast without consent Sunday night at the bar.

We got video of the actor partying it up at the bar with friends. We don't know if the alleged victim appears in the video.

Cuba denies touching anyone inappropriately that night. He was flying out of LAX Tuesday night when he insisted nothing had happened that could even be misconstrued as groping.

Cops will take a mug shot, fingerprints and give Cuba a court date. We expect him to be released shortly thereafter.

Originally Published -- 11:18 AM PT

David Ortiz Wife Thanks 'Hero' Who Saved MLB Star's Life

6/13/2019 9:04 AM PDT
Breaking News

David Ortiz's wife is shouting out the man who raced the MLB star to the hospital -- crashing his own car in the process -- in the wake of Sunday's assassination attempt in the Dominican Republic. 

"I want to take this opportunity to offer our heartfelt thanks and gratitude to Eliezer Salvador, owner of Presidente Sports, for your quick thinking and swift action on Sunday night," Tiffany Ortiz said in a statement. 

"Your heroism and selflessness were the first steps to ensuring David could get the urgent care he required. For that we are eternally grateful."

Salvador runs a sports betting firm in the D.R. and was at the scene when Big Papi was shot Sunday night. When Ortiz went down, Salvador quickly put the legend in his own car and raced to the hospital because he didn't want to wait for an ambulance. 

Salvador says he raced at speeds of over 100 MPH and made the trip in under 7 minutes. He later made a social media video showing that he had David's jewelry so the family wouldn't worry. 

Tiffany says the quick-thinking decision may have saved David's life. 

Ortiz's wife also gave props to the doctors who worked on David. 

"To the amazing surgeons, medical team, and staff at the Abel Gonzalez Clinic in the Dominican Republic, there are no words to express our gratitude for the amazing care you provided."

'Without you, our story could have had a tragic ending. You will forever be our guardian angels."

As for David's condition ...

"David remains in guarded condition in the surgical intensive care following his second surgery. He continues to heal and make progress."

"David will continue to recover in the ICU and future updates on his condition will be provided when necessary." 

Michael Avenatti Sued You Siphoned Almost $4 Mil of My Settlement ... Claims Paraplegic Ex-Client

6/13/2019 10:15 AM PDT
Exclusive Details

Michael Avenatti's legal troubles continue mounting ... he's now facing a lawsuit from his former paraplegic client who claims Avenatti stole nearly $4 million from him.

Geoffrey Johnson is suing the lawyer claiming Avenatti took the vast majority of a $4 million settlement payment that Johnson scored years ago but Avenatti wired to himself in January 2015.

In docs, obtained by TMZ, Johnson sued the L.A. County Sheriff's Department in 2012 claiming its deputies roughed him up during a wrongful arrest. Long story short ... Johnson scored a settlement but says all Avenatti's firm did was wire him meager $1,900 monthly payments.

Johnson's now suing for $9.5 million in compensatory damages ... which includes the $4 mil settlement and $5 mil in additional damages including severe emotional distress. Johnson, BTW, is the guy the feds mentioned in its 36-count indictment that could land Avenatti in prison for the rest of his life.

Avenatti's vehemently denied any wrongdoing telling TMZ ... "Mr. Johnson's claims are categorically false and frivolous, and his case will be thrown out of court." Avenatti explained, "He previously agreed on numerous occasions, including in multiple detailed writings which he reviewed, initialed and signed (after a different lawyer reviewed), that I conducted myself ethically at all times."

The lawsuit, of course, comes on the heels an indictment he allegedly stole money from Stormy Daniels. He's also been charged with allegedly trying to extort millions out of Nike.

Cuba Gooding Jr. Might Not Surrender to NYPD Lawyers View Bar Surveillance Vid

6/12/2019 5:50 PM PDT
EXCLUSIVE

5:50 PM PT -- Cuba Gooding Jr.'s attorney, Mark Heller, tells us he has viewed surveillance video from the bar and says it shows "absolutely no criminality taking place on the part of my client." 

Heller says he's contacted the Manhattan D.A.'s Office Sex Crimes Unit but has not gotten a return phone call. He is trying to find out if they've seen the surveillance video. Heller says he can't believe they would seek to arrest Cuba ... if they'd seen the video.

He says it's up in the air right now as to whether Cuba will turn himself in Thursday, as they'd planned, now that they've seen the video.

Cuba Gooding Jr. will turn himself into NYPD on Thursday and will be arrested for allegedly groping a woman -- but on camera he insists he did nothing wrong, and there's hard evidence to prove it.

Sources connected to the Oscar winner tell TMZ ... he plans to surrender Thursday and expects to be booked for a misdemeanor charge of forcible touching. Cuba was in L.A. Tuesday night -- about to board a flight to NYC -- when a photog asked him directly about the groping allegation.

Cuba says the claim he grabbed a woman's breast Sunday night at Magic Hour Rooftop Bar & Lounge in Manhattan ... is absolutely untrue. He says he was there partying with friends, and posed for pics with fans, but says no one was touched inappropriately ... not even by accident.

Aside from the video we posted -- showing Cuba partying that night at the bar -- he says there's also surveillance video that will show he's innocent.

He also tipped his hat to Jon Stewart, who hours earlier had blasted Congress over the 9/11 Victims Fund, and said that's what's really important now.

As for his legal trouble ... Cuba didn't seem worried. Our Sources say he'll surrender at the Manhattan Special Victim's Unit -- and will be accompanied by his lawyers, Peter Toumbekis and Mark J. Heller. Cops will fingerprint him, and take a mug shot.

From there, as Cuba says ... he'll trust the system.

Originally Published -- 7:18 AM PT

David Ortiz Alleged Shooter Arrested ... Officials Say $8k Hit Ordered

6/12/2019 3:32 PM PDT
Breaking News

3:32 PM PT -- Dominican Republic police have released the mug shot of the man they say shot Big Papi, 25-year-old Rolfi Ferreira Cruz.

D.R. officials also announced they have now arrested SIX total people in connection with the attack on Ortiz ... and say there is at least 1 other suspect still on the run.

The man who allegedly shot David Ortiz has been arrested ... officials announced Wednesday -- saying the shooter, along with 5 other suspects, were paid 400,000 pesos to kill Big Papi.

As we previously reported, Ortiz was shot in the back on Sunday night as he was sitting in an outside patio area of a popular Dominican Republic nightclub.

D.R. cops say two young men drove up to the scene on a motorcycle ... when one of them got off to fire a single bullet into the Red Sox legend's lower back.

Cops say the guys tried to flee the scene on the bike afterward ... but when it fell to the pavement -- they tried to make a run for it on foot.

One of the guys -- the alleged shooter -- was able to escape ... but the other suspect, Eddy Vladimir Feliz Garcia, was beaten to a pulp on the scene by bystanders before he was handed over to cops.

Now, D.R. officials are saying they've caught the suspected shooter and arrested him ... and have also detained 3 additional people they say contributed to the ambush. 

Officials say 6 total individuals were paid 400,000 pesos (the equivalent of $8K) to kill Ortiz in what they believe was a highly-orchestrated attack.

They say the ambush involved 2 vehicles and 1 motorcycle ... and announced 5 of the suspects are now in custody, but one remains at large.

A motive has yet to be determined.

During the press conference, officials also presented the gun they believe was used to shoot Ortiz.

Big Papi underwent surgery late Sunday night to repair the damage the bullet caused ... with surgeons saying they needed to remove his gallbladder and parts of his intestines.

David underwent a second procedure on Monday night after he returned back to Boston. 

In a statement released Wednesday by Ortiz's wife, Tiffany Ortiz, she said, "His condition is guarded and he will remain in the ICU for the coming days, but he is making good progress towards recovery."

Originally published -- 1:33 PM PT

Michael Avenatti No Criminal Charges In Domestic Violence Arrest

6/12/2019 4:13 PM PDT

6/12 4:13 PM PT -- The hearing just went down in L.A. ... and Avenatti is now officially in the clear. He just tweeted, "Today I attended the hearing in the matter relating to the allegations of Ms. Miniutti. At the conclusion of that hearing, I was again informed that NO CHARGES will be filed against me. As I predicted long ago, I was not charged because I did nothing wrong."Michael Avenatti will not be charged with any crime in connection with his domestic violence arrest.

The L.A. City Attorney just announced it will hold an informal hearing in which the alleged victim, Mareli Miniutti, and Avenatti will appear separately and talk about what happened back in November, when the woman claimed he got violent with her ... something Avenatti denies.

The City Attorney says the woman "will be advised of services available to her." As for Avenatti, the City Attorney says "The suspect will be informed that although we decline to file charges at this time, this matter remains open and we may file charges at any time prior to the expiration of the statute of limitations."

As we reported, the L.A. County D.A. declined to file felony charges. 

Mareli also got a temporary restraining order against Avenatti ... a hearing on that matter has been postponed until next month. 

Originally published -- 2/1 10:02 AM PT

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