FORMER Arsenal target Cristian Pavon has angrily denied being a rapist.
The Argentine international was accused of sexually attacking a woman who used social media to publicise her claims against him.
Cristian Pavon is skippered by Lionel Messi at international levelCredit: AFP
The 24-year-old winger – who starred alongside Lionel Messi at the 2018 World Cup and was linked with Watford and Fulham as well as the Gunners – has counter-attacked by calling on a judge to charge his accuser with extortion after the allegations were made public.
The woman at the centre of the ongoing rape probe identified herself in an Instagram post in which she appeared to suggest the alleged rape had happened some time ago and she had received little backing from Boca.
She wrote: “This person does not deserve to be in the club and because of his bad acts he should face justice.
“I’ve been dealing with all sorts of situations for the past year and trying to heal wounds and get the courts to act.
“What’s wrong with the club I support? They should take action. I can’t stand so much hypocrisy any more.”
Alongside a photo of Pavon, she added: “God will act as well. All I ask is that justice is just. What this person did to me has got no name.
“A year of suffering, a year to try to put this behind me and a year to get stronger. I’m not going to have pity as you didn’t have pity with me.”
She also posted a selfie taken in hospital a year ago, supposedly after the rape she claims she was the victim of, and wrote: “After that episode I was very fearful of reprisals because I knew he was a well-known player and I decided to return to my home city.
“Things started becoming difficult for me and then the pandemic arrived.
“Today I’m stronger and can turn to the courts as should be the case.”
The rape complaint is being investigated by a court in Alta Gracia in the province of Cordoba where Pavon hails from.
Sources close to the footballer said he had already made a voluntary statement before returning to Argentina’s capital Buenos Aires for the start of the new league tournament.
He posted a family picture just before New Year, showing him surrounded by his loved ones including girlfriend Victoria Carante and looking happy and relaxed.
Overnight he followed it up by posting a statement from his lawyers rebutting the rape claims.
The statement, drafted by a firm called Gramatica-Ferrari-Gramatica, said: “The allegation about Mr Pavon is false.
“That’s why Mr Pavon has made a formal complaint to the relevant prosecution service stating he has been the victim of extortion and a false allegation.
“In terms of his extortion complaint, Mr Pavon was summonsed as a witness and provided all the information he was able to supply.
“With regards to the complaint against him, all we can add is that Mr Pavon presented himself voluntarily to the relevant prosecutors and said he would make himself available to co-operate with the investigation and prove his innocence.
“Mr Pavon and his family are calm and are confident the courts will act appropriately and the truth will come out along with the illegitimate interests behind this false allegation against him.”
Pavon’s stunning girlfriend has made no public comment about the claims since they became public, but showed her love for her partner with a series of romantic posts over Christmas and the New Year.
In one on Christmas Day, alongside a photograph of them cuddling, she said: “What a privilege it is to have you in my life.
“My wish is that you smile at me like this always. I love you a lot. Happy Christmas love of my life.”
In another the brunette, whose romance with Pavon became public knowledge while he was in LA, added: “Who would have said I was going to meet you like this, by chance, and that now you’d mean everything to me.
“Thank you for arriving and staying. I love you.”
Cristian Pavon also played alongside former Manchester United and West Ham frontman Javier Hernandez while he was on loan at LA Galaxy.
He is said to be eyeing a move to Europe despite his return to Boca Juniors.
He signed for Boca in July 2014 and has 11 caps for Argentina.
Arsenal were reportedly priced out of a move for the winger ahead of his loan to LA Galaxy after being told they would have to cough up £40million.
Rape in Argentina carries a jail sentence of between eight and 20 years.