Ricky Martin: Judge lifts restraining order on singer after harassment claims, which he denies

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Ricky MartinImage source, Reuters
Image caption,
Ricky Martin, pictured at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year

A Puerto Rico judge has lifted a restraining order taken out against Ricky Martin by a family member who had claimed the singer harassed him.

The man withdrew a domestic violence complaint he filed earlier this month in which he alleged Martin refused to accept the end of their relationship.

Martin had denied the man's claims.

Reacting to the judge's decision on Thursday, Martin said he had been the "victim of a lie" and that it was now "time for me to heal".

A judicial spokesperson said the order has been "archived", in other words it is now closed.

Martin posted a comment from his legal team online, alongside the caption "truth prevails", which read: "Just as we had anticipated, the temporary protection order was not extended by the Court.

"The accuser confirmed to the court that his decision to dismiss the matter was his alone, without any outside influence or pressure, and the accuser confirmed he was satisfied with his legal representation in the matter."

They went on to call the accuser a "troubled individual" who "made false allegations with absolutely nothing to substantiate them".

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At a virtual hearing on Thursday, the man's lawyer requested Judge Raiza Cajigas close the case, Martin's lawyer Joaquin Monserrate also told the Reuters news agency.

"The judge asked the pertinent questions - if anyone had threatened him, if anyone had offered him anything in exchange - and (his lawyer) said no, that it was a voluntary decision," said Monserrate said.

The judge issued the restraining order on 2 July after the 21-year-old man filed a domestic violence complaint.

The man claimed he feared for his safety because Martin would not accept his decision to end a seven-month romantic relationship.

The singer has denied any kind of sexual or romantic relationship took place.

The restraining order was granted ex parte, which means neither Martin nor his team were in court to respond to the allegations.

'I'm very hurt'

In a video shared with the media by his publicist, the 50-year-old pop star commented he had been left "very hurt" by the allegation. "It's been almost four decades since I've been working as an artist, under the public eye, and I've never had to deal with something so hurtful like I've lived through these last few weeks," he said.

"I was victim of a lie. Unfortunately, the attack came from a family member … I only wish him the best, for him to find the light."

He added: "A lie can cause so much harm. It harmed me, my husband, my kids, my parents, my family. I couldn't defend myself because there was a legal process I had to follow where I had to be silent until I'd be able to speak to a judge.

"Today was the day. Now, it's time for me to heal. I'm very hurt. I will find peace, the necessary silence to see the light again at the end of the tunnel, like I've always been able to."

In a prior Facebook post, Eric Martin defended his famous brother and suggested the accuser has had mental health issues.

Martin is best known for hits such as Livin' La Vida Loca, She Bangs and Nobody Wants to Be Lonely. He came out as gay in 2010, a decade after he shot to fame.

As an actor, he has starred in The Assassination of Gianni Versace and is due to appear on the forthcoming comedy series Mrs American Pie alongside Carol Burnett, Kristen Wiig, Josh Lucas and Allison Janney.