Attorney Ariel Mitchell, who represents the woman alleging that UFC star Conor McGregor sexually assaulted her at an NBA Finals game, says the league offered money to keep her client quiet in the aftermath of the incident, according to a Thursday report from the Daily Mail.
The Daily Mail, citing a source, said the hush money was in the amount of $100,000.
“Some of the security guards who stood by when this happened were not McGregor’s. They were hired by the Heat,” Mitchell said. “They decided to cater to a celebrity instead of protecting a young woman in trouble.”
Last week, in a demand letter sent to McGregor, the NBA and the Miami Heat, the woman accused McGregor of “violently” raping her while attending the NBA Finals Game 4 on June 10 in Miami. The alleged sexual assault occurred inside a men’s bathroom at Kaseya Center, where McGregor made a promotional appearance in which he knocked out the Heat mascot during the game.
Cell phone video from that night shows McGregor directing several security guards to block off the bathroom and create a pathway before he takes the woman, whom he’d met earlier in the night, by the hand and leads her inside. There, the woman alleges, McGregor forced her to perform oral sex on him and attempted to sodomize her while they were alone in a handicap stall.
In response to Mitchell’s claim of hush money, NBA chief communications officer Mike Bass told the Daily Mail that it’s “categorically false.”
Issues with Miami police
In addition to the NBA and Heat, McGregor’s accuser is also going after the Miami Police Department, expressing anger with how it handled the aftermath of the alleged sexual assault.
Mitchell told the Daily Mail that her client went to police hours later, but things didn’t go the way she’d hoped.
“First, she went to the police precinct where she lives and there they told her to go to another precinct where this happened,” Mitchell said. “So, that’s one rejection of a sexual assault victim. Then, at the rightful precinct, she walked in shortly after 4:30 pm and, half an hour later, she was walked out of the police station.”
According to Mitchell, an officer talked the woman out of filing a proper police report.
“He walked her out of the building in no time,” Mitchell said. “The detective told her to hire an attorney before she files a police complaint. He told her, ‘If you file today, this will go viral.’ Of course, that convinced her to wait, and that’s not good for the investigation.”
According to Miami Police spokesperson Michael Vega, the department started an incident report June 11, although he didn’t provide it to the Daily Mail upon request.
“We did open the case when the victim first came in,” Vega said. “As it happened in many investigations, she had to come back for additional information. I can’t imagine that any officer or detective in this department would turn away the victim of a sex crime.”
Caught off guard
In addition to the video of McGregor coordinating the bathroom escort, there is also footage of McGregor and his accuser together at an arena club after the alleged sexual assault. The two had been partying together earlier in the evening.
Mitchell told the Daily Mail that the woman, prior to the alleged sexual assault, was willing to “go home with” McGregor. When they left the club area together, Mitchell said his client expected to go out somewhere else with McGregor and his entourage – not a men’s restroom inside the arena.
Mitchell said it wasn’t until the early morning hours of June 10 that her client reflected on what happened and decided to take action.
“She was upset about it,” Mitchell said. “She had a talk with her family and she decided to go to the police.”
A history of allegations
McGregor hasn’t spoken publicly on the situation but through his attorney, Barbara R. Llanes, has denied the allegation. Llanes has called it “no more than a shakedown.”
This latest incident is far from the first time McGregor has been accused of sexual assault. He faced accusations twice in 2019 in March and October of that year in Ireland; September 2020 in Corsica, which later was dropped; and in 2021 he faced a lawsuit for an alleged 2018 incident. Earlier this year in January, McGregor was accused of attacking a woman on a yacht in Ibiza. He’s not faced legal punishment in any of those cases.
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