Brazilian footballer Marcelo dos Santos, better known as Marcelinho Paraiba or simply "Marcelinho," was arrested on Wednesday on suspicion of attempted rape, police said.
Paraiba, 36, an attacking midfielder who won five caps for Brazil and still plays with Sport Recife, was arrested with three friends after a young woman accused them of trying to rape her at a party at the player's Rio residence.
The arrest was announced by police commissioner Fernando Zoccola, according to Globo media website G1.
"I am innocent and I will only speak in front of a judge," Paraiba, who left German club Wolfsburg in 2008 to return home and play for Brazilian giants Flamengo, was quoted as saying.
Paraiba, who also had a spell with French club Marseille in 2000 and 2001, was to be jailed at a penitentiary in Serrotao de Campina Grande in northeastern Brazil.
His lawyer, Afonso Vilar, told G1 that his client denied assaulting anyone and said he was drinking with around 30 people when he was surprised by the arrival of the police.
At the station, he told the police he did not know why he was being placed under arrest.