Fiji Time: 3:24 PM on Monday 24 October

Fiji Times Logo

/ Front page / Sport

Court drops sex charge

Saturday, February 01, 2014

PARIS - Bayern Munich winger Franck Ribery and Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema have been acquitted on charges of soliciting an underage prostitute.

The French judge ruled there wasn't enough proof the men were aware that self-described escort Zahia Dehar, now 21, was a minor at the time.

The two footballers, who didn't attend the trial, had faced up to three years in prison if found guilty.

Dehar contends Ribery flew her to Munich as a birthday present to himself in 2009 when she was under 18. She says she lied to the players and told them she was an adult. Dehar was also not present at the trial.

Although Ribery has admitted to having sex with Dehar, he claims he did not pay her and that he did not know she was a prostitute or a minor at the time.

Benzema has denied all the allegations. The 26-year-old Benzema is alleged to have paid $US678 ($F1304) to have sex with Dehar in May 2008, the night he won the French Player of the Year award playing for his former club, Lyon. Dehar was 16 at the time.

Prostitution is legal in France, but prostitutes must be over 18. The case has been hanging over the players since July 2010, when a French judge issued preliminary charges against them.

Ribery arguably had the best season of his career in 2012-13, helping Bayern win the Bundesliga and Champions League. He finished third in the recent Ballon d'Or vote behind Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Last weekend, Benzema scored his 100th club goal for Madrid.

Dehar, in her new capacity as fashion designer, attended the Versace haute couture fashion show in Paris on Sunday.

Fiji Times Front Page Thumbnail

Kaila Front Page ThumbnailFiji Times & Kaila Frontpage PDF Downloads

Use the free Acrobat Reader to view.

Code Inward TTs Outward TTs
CAD 0.65020.6312
JPY 51.786748.7867
GBP 0.39950.3915
EUR 0.44950.4375
NZD 0.68980.6568
AUD 0.64760.6226
USD 0.49350.4765



Exchange Rate updated on 21st October, 2016

Today's Most Read Stories

  1. Drop in roll
  2. Hunt on for sex assault suspect
  3. Villagers fear for safety
  4. Abuse on the streets
  5. Fiji pearls make history
  6. Village diving expedition turns tragic
  7. Teenager finds body in a creek
  8. Villagers turn to sea cucumbers for income
  9. Year 13 exam starts
  10. Alleged robber charged

Top Stories this Week

  1. Former flight attendant invests in farming business Wednesday (19 Oct)
  2. Calls for USP vice chancellor to step down Tuesday (18 Oct)
  3. 'I heard Soko screaming in pain' Friday (21 Oct)
  4. A daughter's sacrifice Thursday (20 Oct)
  5. Dad's cry for justice Tuesday (18 Oct)
  6. 'I never knew Soko' Thursday (20 Oct)
  7. Hero's welcome Wednesday (19 Oct)
  8. 18 workers on the run Tuesday (18 Oct)
  9. Death probe Sunday (23 Oct)
  10. Fijians at heart Wednesday (19 Oct)