From the blog

BRAZIL: Presumed Pele’s Daughter Wants His Body Exhumed For DNA Test

A woman claiming to be football legend Pelé’s secret daughter has demanded the exhumation of his body to prove whether he is her father.

Maria Do Socorro Azevedo, 60, instructed a lawyer to make the move nearly five years after first launching a paternity lawsuit.

Reports quoted her lawyer Marcos Fernando dos Santos Sousa, said initial tests had come back negative but a DNA test had returned ‘high possibilities’ of a blood link with the Brazilian centre-forward.

Mr dos Santos Sousa said they now had ‘no option’ but to request the exhumation of Pele’s body to ‘resolve the situation.’ 

Pelé, who died aged 82 on December 29, 2022, in a Sao Paulo hospital after having a tumour removed from his colon, recognised the possibility he could have another child in his will. He reportedly agreed to a DNA test but died before it could take place. 

Pelé was officially married three times with seven children, including a stepdaughter. Last year, it was reported the footballing icon had left £13m to a secret daughter in his will after spending his life denying he was her father.

His children had agreed to a DNA test, which returned a negative result, but another test is said to be under way.

Pele had reportedly agreed to take a paternity test, but died before one could be conducted – so Maria’s lawyer has requested his body be exhumed his widow’s lawyer said the request is “unreasonable” and “unlikely”.

Speaking in public for the first time, Maria told Record TV on Sunday that her mother never told Pele she was pregnant.

Maria had initially sought tests in 2019, but Pele’s health and the COVID pandemic meant a test was not carried out.