Ched Evans has been found not guilty of raping a woman in a North Wales hotel.
The footballer, who was on the books of Chester City FC between 2000 and 2002, has been on trial at Cardiff Crown Court to face allegations that he raped the 19-year-old at the Premier Inn in Rhuddlan in the early hours of May 30, 2011.
Evans had denied the offence and was cleared by the jury shortly after 2.30pm today.
The 27-year-old was originally found guilty following a trial four years ago, but the conviction was quashed by the Court of Appeal and a retrial ordered.
When the jury of seven men and five women cleared the footballer, Evans immediately hugged his fiancee Natasha Massey, the mother of his nine-month-old son, and they both wept.
In a statement read outside court on his behalf by his solicitor Shaun Draycott, he said he was 'overwhelmed with relief' by the verdict.
His statement said: "In the early hours of 30th May, 2011, an incident occurred in north Wales that was to change my life and the lives of others forever.
"I would like to thank my legal team, Judy Khan QC and David Emanuel of Garden Court Chambers, London, and Shaun Draycott of Draycott Browne Solicitors, Manchester, for their tireless efforts upon my behalf.
"Thanks go, too, to my friends and family; most notably my fiancee Natasha who chose, perhaps incredibly, to support me in my darkest hour.
"Whilst my innocence has now been established, I wish to make it clear that I wholeheartedly apologise to anyone who might have been affected by the events of the night in question."
Evans stood with Miss Massey and supporters as the statement was read.