Black Panther actor Tenoch Huerta denies sexual assault allegations made against him
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Black Panther: Wakanda Forever star Tenoch Huerta has issued a statement denying allegations of sexual assault.
On 10 June musician María Elena Ríos called the actor - who played the villain Namor in the 2022 film - a 'sexual predator'. She went on to accuse him of sexual assault.
Ríos wrote: “It’s very difficult to talk about the emotional abuse and the abuse of power of a sexual predator who is loved around the world for playing a character in a movie such as Tenoch Huerta."
She added: “They say those who live in a macho country, where justice is unattainable where they almost kill you and still they don’t believe you or justice comes.
“And no, I don’t want to be famous. And no, I don’t want money because I know how to work.”
Huerta has since denied the accusations, calling them ‘false and completely unsubstantiated’, as well as clarifying that he is now seeking legal advice on the matter.
In a statement posted online, he wrote: “About a year ago, I dated Elena for several months.
“It was entirely consensual at all times, as countless others can attest. And throughout it was a loving, warm and mutually supportive relationship. After it ended, however, Elena began to misrepresent our interactions both privately and in front of groups of mutual friends.
“As a result, a few months ago, I engaged a legal team to commence the appropriate actions to protect my reputation and refute these irresponsible and false accusations that can cause great prejudice and damage..
“Although I am by no means perfect, I know that these allegations are simply untrue. And while I will always work to improve myself, I need to contest claims that are both false and offensive.”
He added: “I am deeply grateful to my family and the people who have supported me and greatly appreciate everyone who is willing to look at the facts and reflect before rushing to an untrue and unjust conclusion.”
Huerta rose to prominence after getting the role in the sequel to Black Panther in 2022. He had previously had roles in Narcos and The Forever Purge.
It has not been confirmed if Huerta will reprise his role in future Marvel Cinematic Universe projects, however, his character's return was alluded to in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.