The first words of Benjamin Mendy to defend himself in his trial

PAUL ELLIS / AFP Manchester City and France footballer Benjamin Mendy arrives at Chester Crown Court in north-west England on August 15, 2022 for his trial over the alleged rape and assault of seven women. -Mendy, 28, who faces eight counts of rape, one count of sexual assault and one count of attempted rape, related to seven young women, could end his playing career in jail if he is convicted. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP)

PAUL ELLIS / AFP

Benjamin Mendy, here arriving at Chester Crown Court, in north-west England, on August 15, 2022, for his trial for the alleged rape and assault of seven women.

UNITED KINGDOM – Football player Benjamin Mendy, subject to seven charges of rape, took the floor for the first time to defend himself this Monday, November 7, during his trial in the United Kingdom, denying non-consensual relationships and stating that women “came to him”.

The 28-year-old French defender, banned for more than a year by Manchester City, has been on trial since early August in Chester, northern England, where he is accused of seven rapes, attempted rape and sexual assault.

The events allegedly took place between October 2018 and August 2021 at his home in Prestbury, Cheshire. He faces life in prison.

The first months of this long trial were devoted to the prosecution, which presented Benjamin Mendy as a “predator” having abused the victims “vulnerable, terrified and isolated”.

Since Monday, now it’s up to the defense to speak. Benjamin Mendy, in a navy blue suit and white shirt, spoke for the first time to defend himself, answering questions from his lawyer.

He said that because of his condition as a footballer, women “came to (him)”. “I started receiving a lot of messages on Instagram”, He explained. He responded to these women in a way “straight”without hiding his intentions.

“I know I’m not Brad Pitt and I know women don’t come to me for my looks”also said the footballer, who had gained some notoriety after signing for Manchester City five years ago.

He had time to think in jail

yes he said “I love sleeping with many women”denied having sex without consent, believing that “if they (women) wanted to have sex and I wanted to have sex too, that was fine”.

But if a woman had said ” Nope “Benjamin Mendy claimed that he “I would have accepted it and stopped”.

Of his six months in prison, from August 2021 to January 2022, Benjamin Mendy said he had time to reflect: “I thought about my whole life because I don’t normally have time for that. There I was alone, sitting and the only thing I could do was think. I thought about how it was with women, about the fear of losing my football, remembering why I came to this country. »

Winner of the 2018 World Cup with the French national team, where he was a substitute, Benjamin Mendy spent more than four months, from August 2021 to January 2022, in preventive detention.

Released in early January, he was placed under judicial supervision pending trial.

Trained in Le Havre, revealed in Marseille and spent a season at Monaco, Benjamin Mendy became the most expensive defender in history in 2017 when the Citizens paid 52 million pounds (about 61.4 million euros at current prices). to get their services.

He is tried along with another man, Louis Saha Matturie -no relation to former soccer player Louis Saha-, prosecuted for his part for six rapes and three sexual assaults.

They both pleaded not guilty.

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