Beryly Lubala, Blackpool striker, has been found not guilty of rapping an 18-year-old girl after inviting her to his hotel room for ‘Netflix and chill’ and having sex with her.
Beryly Lubala, a 24-year-old striker, said he was “delighted” to be found not guilty and is anxious to return to sport.
The player was accused of pulling the 18-year-old by her hair and instructing her to “be a nice girl” before rapping her, something he has always denied.
According to Lewes Crown Court, the footballer said he never wanted to sleep with the lady since he had a match the following day.
After a jury found him not guilty in less than two hours, the forward thanked his legal team.”I am thrilled with the ruling,” the footballer stated following the decision. “I would want to thank Jesus Christ, my Lord and Savior.”
“I’d want to express my gratitude to my family and friends for sticking with me through what has been an extremely trying time in my life.”I’d want to express my gratitude to the jury and the judge, Her Honour Shani Barnes, for their time.”
“Finally, I’d want to express my gratitude to Julia Smart QC and Iqbal Ahmed, my solicitor, for their tireless efforts and assistance.”
“Now that a jury has declared me not guilty on all charges, I want to put this incident behind me and concentrate on my family, my future, and my football career.”
“Thank you everybody for being so cool, I know it was difficult for you,” Her Honour Judge Shani Barnes stated.
“This one took on a whole new degree of strain,” the judge told the jurors. The lives of many people were put on hold.
“You have the freedom to return to your life, and Mr Lubala has the freedom to return to his.”
The lady, now 20, told officers she made it plain in multiple text conversations before visiting the player’s house in September 2019 that she did not want to have sex with him.
After the girl “loved a few photographs in a row” on Lubala’s Instagram, the two started speaking on Snapchat before meeting in person.
The lady testified in court that she had had sexual contact with the Championship player on two occasions before to the night she alleged she was assaulted.
Lubala had approached her again after she had concluded another relationship, according to the verdict. He reportedly texted the lady that all he wanted to do was watch Netflix and relax, and she agreed to pay him a third visit.
On September 13, 2019, the lady drove to his home in Horsham, near Crawley, West Sussex, when Lubala was playing for Crawley Town.
The lady then recorded a series of emotional voice messages as she drove herself home, which the court heard.
Lubala cried in court last week as he described how, after being banned from Blackpool FC, he worked at an Amazon warehouse to make ends meet.
He said how he was expecting his first kid when he learned he had been prosecuted, and he was worried about losing his job.
Lubala was drawing interest from Championship and Premier League scouts after joining Crawley Town from Birmingham City at the time of the alleged rape.