French court rejects Benzema’s request to drop blackmail case

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Paris, Dec 16 (IANS) The Versailles court of appeal rejected the request of Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema and other defendants to drop the case of alleged blackmail over a sex tape featuring his France team-mate Mathieu Valbuena on Friday.

The case is now expected to go to trial next year, reports Efe.

A spokesman for the prosecutor’s office said the court’s investigation chamber refused to overturn the case as requested by the defendants’ lawyers, who believe that there were irregularities in the case.

According to the prosecutor’s office, the Real Madrid player tried to persuade his team-mate to pay the blackmailers, something that Benzema denies as he claims that his sole objective was to help Valbuena.

Karim Benzema has had his appeal to be allowed to make private calls from his phone rejected.

The French striker remains under investigation with regard to an alleged blackmail attempt against Valbuena.

Police have tapped Benzema’s phone, and the 28-year-old had hoped the condition would be revoked.

Benzema, currently in Japan, scored in Madrid’s Club World Cup semi-final 2-0 win over Mexico’s Club America on Thursday.

Benzema and Valbuena haven’t appeared for France since news of the case broke. They were not picked by France to play at Euro 2016 on home soil.

–IANS

sam/bg

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