Earlier today, Bayern Munich’s Lucas Hernandez appeared in front of the criminal court in Madrid to Judge Maria Paloma Munoz Rubiales for the case against him involving the incident with his wife, Amelia back in 2017 in Madrid. During the appearance, Hernandez was told that he would have to begin a six-month prison sentence within the next ten days, to which he had already lodged an official objection in addition to appealing the sentence from the Madrid Regional Court, but that objection was rejected (Bild).
At this point, addressing the elephant in the room, it is unclear whether or not, exactly, Hernandez will actually have to go to prison for six months. His appeal is currently being examined by Section 26 of the Madrid Regional Court and if it is accepted before October 28th, he would not have to go to prison. Even if the decision is not made by that date, Hernandez could still ask to remain at large until a finalized verdict is reached by the Regional Court.
There are a lot of moving parts to this situation. The altercation between Hernandez and his wife happened in 2017, but was quickly reconciled, so much to the point that the pair shortly thereafter went on a honeymoon to the Bahamas after getting married in Las Vegas. The honeymoon was a clear violation of the court order that stipulated the two do not come within 500 feet of one another for a period of six months, however Hernandez’s wife was never officially presented with said court order. Hernandez was and, as a result, he was detained upon their re-entry into Spain. They were both also order to complete a total of 31 days of community service, to which there is speculation that Hernandez did not entirely complete, on top of his clear violation of the restraining order and original, six month sentence.
What’s also working against Hernandez is the fact that he does have prior convictions on his record, which Luis Salas, press officer of the Madrid Higher Regional Court emphasized. “There are two convictions for domestic violence and also a third for breach of judgment. This is a very serious offense! She (the judge) can only apply the law. She has not simply decided to send him to prison. She is just carrying out a judgment. Behind the decision to imprison are two different judges and the prosecution. That’s three!,” he explained.
Technically, Hernandez is not what’s referred to as a repeat or habitual offender since has not had any like offenses within a short window of time, so that’s something that could potentially work in his favor, as Spanish lawyer Carlos Barceló alluded to. “As a so-called ‘non-habitual offender’ — that is, someone who has not committed the same offense more than twice in a short period of time — he can plead to have his sentence revoked,” he emphasized. In that regard, it works in his favor that he and his wife have a son together and he is being raised in a safe and civil environment.
It is clear that there are still options for Hernandez to avoid his prison sentence, but nothing is certain at this point in time. For now, he is still available for selection for Julian Nagelsmann and Bayern is respecting Hernandez in keeping this matter private for him. He put in a solid shift in the 5-1 win at Bayer Leverkusen and has enjoyed a fine start to the season. “Of course we dealt with the situation, but here too you have to understand that this is a private matter for Lucas. In addition, there are legal proceedings and I think there is also a great understanding that we will not express ourselves in the context of these proceedings,” Oliver Kahn said when he was asked about the situation. Herbert Hainer had echoed Kahn’s sentiment by not commenting on the issue and respecting Hernandez’s privacy when he was asked about it.
As far as the most likely outcomes for Hernandez at this point, we can defer to BFW’s own RLD, who’s the resident legal expert:
There are a raft of potential punishments facing the elite defender and predicting what will happen is tough. The judge has some discretion but it appears that Spanish law may not allow for a complete non-custodial sentence. While it seems unlikely he will have to serve the full six months, some are predicting that he will be released after only serving a few days of his sentence. It is possible that he may be allowed to pay a large fine in exchange for his sentence being suspended. Whatever way it goes hopefully the young man, and the large numbers of people watching the case, will learn that ignoring a court order in a domestic violence situation has consequences, no matter how rich and famous you are.