Benjamin Mendy’s rape trial has ‘the makings of a good drama’ with a ‘plot twist’ jurors told

Benjamin Mendy’s rape trial has ‘the makings of a good drama with money, sex and celebrity but with a plot twist’, jurors are told

  • Jurors at Mendy’s rape trial were told to consider the ‘most significant plot twist’
  • The footballer denies six counts of rape and sexual assault against six women
  • His alleged ‘fixer’ Louis Saha Matturie is on trial for both rape and sexual assault 
  • Chester Crown Court heard the closing speech of Matturie’s defence lawyer 

Benjamin Mendy’s rape trial has ‘the makings of a very good drama with money, sex and celebrity’, a court was told today.

But like all good dramas, there had been a ‘very significant plot twist’ a defence lawyer told jurors at Chester Crown Court during the trial’s closing speeches. 

The court case began in August with the prosecution claiming that the Man City star, and his alleged ‘fixer’ Louis Saha Matturie, were sexual ‘predators’ and ‘monsters’, with one 19-year-old woman claiming both men had raped her. 

Mobile phone footage later emerged of her having ‘enthusiastic’ sex with Matturie on an occasion she claimed she was being raped. The judge ordered the jury to acquit both defendants on those charges.

Manchester City Star Benjamin Mendy arriving at Chester Crown Court as his trial following allegations of rape and sexual assault continues

Manchester City Star Benjamin Mendy arriving at Chester Crown Court as his trial following allegations of rape and sexual assault continues 

During her closing speech today, Matturie’s defence barrister, Lisa Wilding, KC, pointed out to the jury that one of the original complainants had been shown to have lied about her claims to have been raped by both men.

She told the court: ‘This case, and I don’t say this flippantly at all, has all the makings of a good drama; it has money, sex, it has celebrity.

‘But like all good dramas, there was, I suggest, before your eyes over the last 15 weeks the most significant plot twist.

‘Because much as you may have started this case looking at them in the dock and thinking, ‘How could you? You will I’m sure have kept an open mind.

‘I suggest you have the clearest example of how chillingly easy it is to make a false allegation by a girl who is at the heart of that complex spiders web of connections.’

She told the court that each allegation against Matturie used ‘flawed’ evidence ‘riddled with inconsistencies’.

Louis Saha Matturie (pictured), Mendy's alleged 'fixer', outside Chester Crown Court ahead of his trial following allegations of rape and assault

Louis Saha Matturie (pictured), Mendy’s alleged ‘fixer’, outside Chester Crown Court ahead of his trial following allegations of rape and assault 

‘I suggest there will have come a point when you thought, ‘Hang on a minute. These girls aren’t telling the truth,” Ms Wilding said.

She added: ‘This started as a case about predatory rapists. It has ended with a suggestion that the actions of these defendants hurt the feelings of the girls, they didn’t think about the consequences for the girls, they had sex with girls within minutes of meeting them.

‘None of these things either collectively, far less individually, makes either of these men a rapist. These are not girls who do not know how to live or how to act or how to look after themselves.

‘Sex is, by its nature, mostly private between individuals behind closed doors . It may be emotional, or it may be deliberately not so. It is very dangerous to mix feelings and emotions with criminal law.

Mendy (pictured) denies seven counts of rape, one count of attempted rape and one count of sexual assault against six young women

Mendy (pictured) denies seven counts of rape, one count of attempted rape and one count of sexual assault against six young women

‘Women have earned sexual equality young people may approach sexual encounters very differently from those who earned that sexual equality.

‘You may think that many young women actively pursue sexual encounters with men they hardly know. That is their right.

‘But consensual sex is a complex thing. Regret and hurt and embarrassment can all follow consensual sexual intercourse.’ 

Ms Wilding said the sexual habits and lifestyles of the defendants did not make them rapists.

The jury has heard claims all the complainants are in some way connected through friendships, social media connections or by attending parties.

Mendy and his co-accused Louis Saha Matturie are seen in a court drawing from a previous hearing

Mendy and his co-accused Louis Saha Matturie are seen in a court drawing from a previous hearing 

The defence lawyer also asked jurors not to hold it against Matturie that, unlike Mendy, he did not go in the witness box in his own defence, stating ‘his silence cannot, of itself, prove he is guilty’.

Prosecutors claim Mendy lured young women into ‘toxic and dangerous’ situations where they were raped and sexually assaulted at a flat, he rented in Manchester city centre, and his home, The Spinney, in Mottram St Andrew, in the Cheshire countryside, used for ‘after-parties’ including regular lockdown-busting gatherings.

Matturie is alleged to have been the ‘fixer’ to get girls back to the parties after nights spent drinking in VIP lounges at Manchester nightclubs.

Both defendants say any sex with women was consensual.

Mendy denies seven counts of rape, one count of attempted rape and one count of sexual assault against six young women.

Matturie, of Eccles, Salford, denies six counts of rape and three counts of sexual assault relating to seven young women.

The trial continues with the judge expected to take around a week to sum up the evidence before the jury retires to consider verdicts.

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