Real Madrid striker facing five year jail term over sex tape scandal

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Real Madrid striker facing five year jail term over sex tape scandal

Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema is facing five years in jail on a blackmail charge related to a sex-tape involving a former French footballer.

Benzema, who is charged with complicity, is on trial with four other men accused of trying to blackmail Mathieu Valbuena.

However, the Real Madrid striker has refused to appear in court, describing the charge as a “masquerade”.

The case dates back to 2015, when Valbuena asked a man to help him upload the contents of his mobile phone to a new device.

The man found sexually explicit material on the phone, and allegedly tried to blackmail Mr Valbuena by threatening to make the tape public.

The defendants are accused of approaching a childhood friend of Mr Benzema called Karim Zenati.

Benzema then approached Valbuena, offering to help resolve the matter by putting him in touch with Zenati.

Police, who had already been brought into the matter by Valbuena, were tapping the defendants’ phone calls and recorded Mr Benzema telling Zenati, “He’s not taking us seriously.”

Mr Zenati is said to have replied: “We’re here to sort it out; if he doesn’t want that he’ll have to deal with the piranhas.”

The trial will continue until the end of the week, with Benzema facing five years in jail and a €75,000 (£63,000) fine, which is the maximum sentence for complicity in attempted blackmail.