(CNN) — The disgraced former head of Spanish soccer has denied he sexually assaulted a star player on the women’s national team with an unwanted kiss following their World Cup victory last year – suggesting he is only being questioned because he is a man.

Speaking in a television interview aired on Wednesday, former Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) President Luis Rubiales also claimed that forward Jennifer Hermoso had consented to the kiss during the medal ceremony, which was televised globally and overshadowed Spain’s historic first Women’s World Cup win.

According to an indictment seen by CNN, Spanish prosecutors are seeking a two-and-a-half year prison sentence for Rubiales after they formally accused him of sexual assault for kissing Hermoso “without [her] consent or acceptance.” He denies the charge.

“For me, there is no crime,” Rubiales told TV channel La Sexta. “That is my opinion, my humble opinion, which I also lived through.”

Rubiales, who has previously apologized for the kiss, told La Sexta there was nothing sexual about his actions and claimed he had asked Hermoso for consent, to which she allegedly replied “vale,” — Spanish for “OK.”

“Vale so, we gave each other a peck …that is my version,” he said.

“Whoever sees the images, for real, I cannot reach an understanding on how someone can think that is sexual assault.”

Rubiales also claimed he is being questioned over the incident because he is a man.

“Anyone can be questioned, even you, any person … what you (media) are wanting to do is curtail the freedom of thought … many news outlets want to curtail the freedom of thought,” he claimed.

CNN has reached out to Hermoso and the RFEF for comment.

Hermoso has previously said she did not consent and was not respected by Rubiales.

“I’ve had to bear the consequences of an act that I didn’t provoke, which I didn’t choose or premeditate,” she told GQ Spain in an interview last November. “I’ve received threats and that’s something which you will never get used to.”

Rubiales stepped down from his RFEF role last September following an intense public backlash over the kiss and has been banned from all soccer-related activities for three years by FIFA, the sport’s world governing body.

On Wednesday, Rubiales was detained for questioning after arriving in Madrid from an international flight, according to Spain’s Civil Guard, in what multiple media reports suggested was part of an ongoing corruption probe relating to his tenure as RFEF president.

A Civil Guard spokesman confirmed to CNN that Rubiales was questioned over a different investigation than the sexual assault charge, but would not elaborate further due to a Court decision.

Rubiales was later released, the Civil Guard said.

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