Yesterday in the court in Chester, the case against the world champion and football player of the English champion Manchester City – Benjamin Mendy began.
He is charged with eight counts of rape, one count of sexual assault and one count of attempted rape. All this by seven different women, with each of the acts in question taking place in the home of the French defender.
Mendy has been out of football for a year, spending 134 days in custody and the rest under house arrest, and pleaded not guilty yesterday at the start of his case.
However, the process will be long and complicated, with English media predicting that it will be decided in at least five weeks, perhaps more.
If Mendy is found guilty of all charges, he could spend the rest of his life in a British prison, but five team-mates could come to his rescue. In general, no one foresees an option in which the football player will avoid prison, but his sentence can be seriously reduced after the testimony of his colleagues.
Riyad Mahrez, Jack Grealish, Kyle Walker, Raheem Sterling and John Stones will be called to testify in court, and their words could have a huge impact on the course of the case.
It is not yet clear why these five players have been called up, but the Island’s media say they can present facts exonerating Mendy on some of the charges.
If this happens, the sentence of the world champion with France from 2018 will be significantly lighter, on the order of between 5 and 20 years.