Ribery, Benzema In Prostitution Trials

The trial of French footballers Franck Ribery and Karim Benzema, charged with having sex with an underage prostitute, has begun in Paris.
Bayern Munich winger Mr Ribery, 30, and Real Madrid striker Mr Benzema, 26, deny knowingly paying for sex with Zahia Dehar while she was under 18.
They each face up to three years in prison and fines of up to 45,000 euros ($55,000). Neither was present in court, allowing their lawyers to represent them. Ms Dehar, now 21, did not attend either.
Earlier Carlo Alberto Brusa, Mr Ribery’s lawyer, struck an upbeat note. “We are going in confident and we are going to fight,” he said.
The two players are accused of paying for sex with Ms Dehar when she was 16, in Mr Benzema’s case, and 17, in Mr Ribery’s.
The age of consent is 15 in France, but paying for sex with anyone under 18 is a crime. The trial is going ahead after France’s highest court ruled that only those aware that a prostitute was underage can be found guilty of breaking the law.
-Source: bbc.

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