Dubai: A footballer has denied in court the accusation of raping a woman friend following a dinner invite at a luxurious hotel in Palm Jumeirah.

Walking in to the Dubai Court of First Instance on Monday using crutches for an apparent leg injury, the Emirati footballer firmly refuted the charge of having forced himself on his 36-year-old Lebanese woman friend and raping her in March.

“I did not do that,” the Emirati suspect was heard telling presiding judge Urfan Omar as he entered a not guilty plea in courtroom three.

Records said the suspect called up the Lebanese woman and invited her and other friends to a fancy dinner at the luxury hotel in March.

The man drove to the woman’s place and picked her up along with her female friend, according to records, before he drove to Palm Jumeirah.

An Emirati male friend later joined the group for dinner at the restaurant.

The footballer, who has played for several clubs and the national team, informed the Lebanese woman that he had made a room reservation for her to stay overnight and had also reserved a room for himself.

Following the dinner, the suspect called the 36-year-old woman and told her that he needed a charger to charge his phone before she informed him that she had one in her room.

The Emirati went up to the woman’s room and asked her not to take any liquor from the minibar because he had arranged for alcohol and mixed nuts from outside the hotel.

The couple sat at the balcony drinking and eating mixed nuts for sometime and when the woman walked into the room, the man tried to flirt with her, but she rejected him.

He was said to have repeatedly tried to touch the woman and lure her to bed with him, but she persistently cut him off, said records.

Thereafter the man turned violent, pulled her by her hair, threw her on the bed, pinned her down and raped her. When she tried to leave the room after taking shower, the man prevented her and threatened her. He also allegedly assaulted her physically and threatened to kill her.

During Monday’s trial, the Lebanese woman walked up to the judges’ bench and addressed presiding judge Omar by saying: “I want my rights.”

Meanwhile the suspect’s lawyer asked the court to adjourn the hearing until he reviews the case file as the footballer has just signed the power of attorney on Sunday.

The woman was said to have sworn before him that she would not report him to the police and begged him to allow her to leave for the sake of her children. Once she reached the lobby, the woman informed the first security guard she came across about what had happened, said records.

Presiding judge Omar notified the Lebanese woman to reappear in court October 12 to hear her statement.