The drama quickly snowballed. Extracts of a televised interview with Trindade, in which she accused Neymar of “aggression together with rape,” aired just one hour before he was about to enter the pitch for the pre-Copa game between Brazil and Qatar.
Neymar tore his right ankle ligament in the 20th minute, ruling him out of the tournament.
In the following weeks, Neymar was questioned by police over the WhatsApp messages.
He also appeared before police in Sao Paulo, where Trindade had filed her complaint at the end of May.
As the case dragged on, police filed a defamation suit against Trindade – who was dropped by multiple lawyers – after she insinuated the force was corrupt.
“The police are bought, aren’t they? Or am I crazy?” she told television channel SBT last month in response to questions over the police investigation of an alleged theft of a tablet device from her home that contained a short video she claims has conclusive evidence she was assaulted.
Despite the seriousness of the allegations, polls have shown that most Brazilians believe Neymar is innocent.
Controversy has followed the Paris Saint-Germain player, who flew back to France earlier this month.
Neymar, who joined PSG in 2017, has made clear he wants to return to Barcelona.