Zenati was sentenced to 15 months in prison. Of the other two, they were sentenced to imprisonment for two and two and a half years, and one was sentenced to 18 months probation.
In addition to criminal fines, the defendants were also ordered to pay Valbuena € 250,000, or about $ 281,000, in damages. They are jointly and severally liable for the payment of 150,000 euros of this amount, with Benzema ordering an additional 80,000 euros to be paid individually and the other defendants another 5,000 euros each.
A court in Versailles, southwest of Paris, heard in court last month how Valbuena was first alerted in 2015 by another teammate from France of the existence of an intimate video of him, believed to have been stolen from Valbuena’s mobile phone. …
In June of that year, Valbuena received several phone calls from men who threatened to publish the video if he did not pay them tens of thousands of euros. Valbuena refused and instead filed a criminal complaint.
The court was informed that, after several unsuccessful attempts, the blackmailers were suspected of having contacted Zenati in the hope that he would push Benzema to speak with Valbuena and prompt him to pay.
In October 2015, in a conversation with Valbuena at the French team’s training base in Clairefontaine, near Paris, Benzema said he could help his teammate by putting him in touch with someone who can fix the problem, as the court heard.
Benzema, who was not present at the trial, admitted to acting as an intermediary, but always claimed that he was simply giving Valbuena friendly advice on how to deal with the blackmail attempt, but did not take part in it.