Karim Benzema, striker for Real Madrid and France national team member, is currently standing trial over a sex tape that was leaked on the internet. The Frenchman stands accused of attempting to blackmail French teammate Mathieu Valbuena by telling him about the video’s release if he didn’t give Benzema more playing time. He has denied any involvement in this incident and looks forward to returning to his club as soon as possible once his trial ends.

Karim Benzema is a professional footballer who plays for Real Madrid and the French national team. He has been standing trial over a sex tape case. His wife, Safia Brakni, has also been implicated in this case.

Due to professional duties, Karim Benzema was unable to attend court. via Getty Images, Stanislav Vedmid/DeFodi Images

Karim Benzema, a France and Real Madrid striker, was charged with involvement in the attempted blackmail of former international teammate Mathieu Valbuena over a sex film on Wednesday.

Prosecutors claim that Benzema, who has denied involvement, persuaded Valbuena to pay a suspected ring of blackmailers to keep the sexually graphic recording out of the public view.

At June 2015, while at the French squad’s training center in Clairefontaine, west of Paris, they claim Valbuena got a first call threatening to disclose the recording.

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On Wednesday, Valbuena told a court in neighboring Versailles that it was evident the caller wanted money and that the blackmail attempt had made him worry for his career and position in the national team.

Benzema missed the opening of the trial due to professional duties, according to his lawyer, who has called the evidence against him “absurd.”

The 33-year-old, who has 92 caps for France and was reinstated to the team for this year’s European Championship, appeared in his club’s 5-0 Champions League group stage triumph against Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday night in Ukraine.

In the aftermath of the “sex video issue,” Benzema and Valbuena both lost their positions in the national squad.

Valbuena’s anonymous initial contact, according to authorities, stated he wanted to “come to an agreement” with Valbuena and ordered him to choose an intermediary.

“This case has been with us for six years. I notice that practically everyone is there [in court]. Karim [Benzema] has vanished “Valbuena explained.

“It’s a pity, but that’s the way things are. We intend to go all the way. We’ve been anticipating this moment for the last six years. We’ll stay as long as it takes for all of this to be over with.”

Former France international Djibril Cisse was first enlisted by the blackmailers to encourage Valbuena to pay the hush money. Cisse, on the other hand, alerted him about the extortion attempt, according to Valbuena.

According to prosecutors, an undercover police officer acted as a middleman on Valbuena’s behalf and taped phone conversations between June and October 2015 that helped identify the suspected blackmailers.

The accused blackmailers allegedly hired Benzema to persuade Valbuena to pay while his buddy delayed.

His childhood buddy Karim Zenati, who reportedly functioned as a middleman, and Mustapha Zouaoui, one of the scam’s suspected architects, are among Benzema’s co-accused.

Zouaoui told reporters that he had received the sex film and shared it with Benzema and other France players, but that no effort had been made to extort money from Valbuena. Before the trial began, he stated, “We retained the recording for ourselves.”

If found guilty of involvement in attempted blackmail, Benzema risks up to five years in prison and a fine of €75,000 ($87,000).

Attempted blackmail charges have been filed against his four co-accused.

Karim Benzema stands trial over sex tape case. The Real Madrid footballer is accused of having an intimate relationship with a woman without her consent, which is punishable by up to three years in prison and a fine. Reference: valbuena height.

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