After almost six-years the sex-tape blackmailing case between Karim Benzema and Mathieu Valbuena is finally over. In 2015, Mathieu Valbuena asked a man in Marseille, Axel Angot, to transfer all contents of his phone to a new one, Angot found an explicit video of Valbuena and later used that content to blackmail the former French national team player.
Karim Benzema involvement in the case stems from a childhood friend of his, Karim Zenati, getting involved in the blackmail and later it appeared that Benzema served as a middleman between the blackmailers and Valbuena.
Karim Benzema guilty of blackmail
Karim Benzema was ordered to pay 75,000 euros ($84,000), and his one-year- jail sentence is suspended for his involvement in the blackmailing of Mathieu Valbuena. Benzema himself, along with the other codefendants, was not present for much of the trial or verdict.
Benzema’s legal team said they would appeal the decision; the French striker has professed his innocence throughout the whole ordeal. Benzema was dropped from the French national team as a result of the scandal and missed out on France's World Cup victory in 2018. Since then, Benzema has returned to the French team and participated in the 2020 Euros.
The French soccer federation had stated that if found guilty Benzema would not lose his standing on the national team. Benzema also should have no issues in being on the voting ballot for the 2021 Ballon d'Or.