Since I have received quite a lot of positive feedback when I posted my most recent short story from my upcoming novel here, I thought I would share a past story from a few years back. This story called “Dodgy Tackle” was inspired by the Ched Evans affair. Evans was an British footballer who was convicted of rape and released after serving his sentence.
Many people throughout the UK, even those who couldn’t care less about football, were disgusted with the decision by top London club Tottenham Hotspur to allow convicted rapist Felipe Fonsecca to return to his old club after just serving two years in prison for the rape of an eighteen year old girl. There were strong outcries from women’s groups and many of the papers agreed with their sentiments. In fact, many people in the UK thought that the Spanish international should be sent back to his own country. Feelings were running very strong.
Fonsecca arrived in the UK five years prior at the age of twenty-one where he established himself on the pitch, scoring eighteen goals for the club in his first season. His continued great play the following season earned him a spot on Spain’s national team and Spurs fans were quick to forgive him when he scored the game winner against England in a friendly.
It was his performances off the pitch that gave some people concern. Rumours abounded of him acting inappropriately towards women and he was thrown out of a West End club for touching a young lady’s bottom. Furthermore, Fonsecca had a fiery temper as well, getting into a few drink filled altercations at a few night spots. One of these landed him in court and getting a £500 fine when he hit a man over the head with a bottle when the man confronted him over making a lewd comment about his girlfriend. While some remarked that Fonsecca had gotten off too lightly, little was said about it and as long as he kept kicking balls into the back of opposing team’s nets, no one was going to.
The rape, on the other hand, couldn’t be so easily ignored. Too many people saw Fonsecca approach the victim who was too drunk to agree to anything. The saw him guide the girl into a dark alley only for him to emerge triumphantly a few moments later. A good number of witnesses heard him boasting to his friends about how he gave her one. Fortunately, a good number also saw the girl come out of the alleyway moments later after Fonsecca had gone. The young lady was clearly looking distressed. Her tights were ripped and she was sobbing very heavily and holding her pants in her hand. Seeing the state she was in, a good Samaritan gave assistance and called the police.
Felipe Fonsecca was arrested and charged with rape. At his trial and in spite of his celebrity status and his barrister’s attempts to make the victim look like a cheap slut, he was convicted and sentenced to four years in prison. The evidence against him had been irrefutable. This did not stop his army of supporters ceaselessly campaigning to clear his name during his incarceration.
That wasn’t the worst of things, at least not for the victim. Someone discovered her identity and leaked it onto social media. The result was a savage hate campaign against her calling her a liar and a tart. In the end, she was forced to move far away and change her name, which made her a victim a second time around.
Now released on probation after just serving half of his prison term, Fonsecca was free to continue his football career. Tottenham management played the “everyone deserves a second chance” card but only Tottenham fans bought that one. Women’s groups were still up in arms and started an online petition to the club not to sign him. Others argued that he could continue his career back in Spain but the club ignored all of these and welcomed him back. Many opinions were being expressed and the topic wasn’t going to go away very quickly.