The ex-girlfriend of former Manchester United star Ryan Giggs fled to Abu Dhabi to escape his alleged abuse, a court in the UK has heard.
Kate Greville, 36, claims Giggs, 48, controlled her, assaulted her and "gaslighted" her in their relationship which escalated to the point where she felt she needed to leave Britain.
The former Wales manager is on trial at Manchester Crown Court on charges of attacking and coercively controlling his ex and assaulting her sister. He denies all charges.
Ms Greville said she believed the ex-footballer was her “soulmate” but early in the relationship noticed “red flags”, and that he cheated on her with eight women.
Their relationship began as an affair while they both were married and within two months Ms Greville had left her husband. She claimed Mr Giggs promised to also leave his wife Stacey, with whom he has two children. When the sportsman dragged his heels Ms Greville gave him an ultimatum, but nothing changed and she decided to move to Abu Dhabi to “get away from him”.
She said Mr Giggs told her he had moved out of his marital home and was living with his mother.
“Then I found out he had not,” she said in a police interview shown in court. “That went on for about nine months and then I decided he is not going to split up with Stacey, that is not happening. I went to live in Abu Dhabi to get away from him.”
Ms Greville worked for a PR firm employed by Giggs’ businesses and said she was worried for her job as the former footballer had implied her role could be in jeopardy, and she said he threatened to tell her boss about their secret affair.
Rumours began at her workplace about their relationship but she lied about it because she was “ashamed I was seeing a married man”.
“I made the decision to leave to Abu Dhabi and people would talk about it at work and my boss sat me down and asked me outright if anything was going on,” Ms Greville said.
“It was affecting my work, it wasn’t good for me.”
At one point during their volatile relationship, Ms Greville stopped speaking to Mr Giggs and ignored his calls and messages.
Ms Greville told police that he turned up at her apartment but she ignored him again.
He then shouted allegations that she had someone in there with her, Ms Greville said.
The affair became public in May 2016, the court heard, a turning point which Ms Greville described as “horrendous” as she was “hounded” by paparazzi.
It continued to be an on-off relationship, with periods of her refusing to speak to him.
“It was literally like I was addicted to him. I couldn’t get him out of my head.”
Giggs flew to Dubai and tried to convince Ms Greville to take him back. He said to her “let’s start a family, you are the only person I want to be with”, she said.
“Then he went back home and I found out he was dating another girl. I was absolutely devastated,” she said.
He denied he had cheated on her and she “gave him another chance” as he urged her to move back to Manchester with him and have a baby.
“It was like he was almost two people,” she said. “It was like ‘is he a good person? Is he a bad person?’
“I started to get horrendous anxiety.”
She described having arguments with him, including one in which he allegedly kicked her out of a hotel room, leaving her stranded naked in a corridor.
Giggs “flipped”, she said, grabbed her by the wrists “hard” and “literally dragged” her naked body across the floor before he threw her belongings into the corridor.
Ms Greville said she was “left humiliated and embarrassed” as she found herself with no clothes on in the hallway.
When she got back into bed he did not speak to her, she said.
She said: “That was the first time he was aggressive to me.”
While on holiday in Dubai, Ms Greville said she was lying on a sun lounger when she received an anonymous email containing a naked photo of Giggs with a married woman.
“It was not a picture of his head, but it was him,” she said. “Your whole body goes into shock. That was the first time I realised, ‘Actually maybe he’s not what I think he is.'”
She claimed her ex-boyfriend had “full-on relationships” with eight other women while they were dating, saying she discovered the details on his tablet computer shortly before she decided to leave him.
“The reality of what I had found on that iPad was way worse than I could imagine,” she said. “Eight women he was having affairs with while he was with me. Full-on relationships.”
Giggs is alleged to have headbutted Ms Greville at his home in Worsley, Greater Manchester, on November 1 2020, and elbowed her sister in the jaw in the same incident. He denies all the charges against him.
The trial continues.