The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION
Verdict next week in Paris trial of Ribery, Benzema on charges of seeing underage prostitute
PARIS - The trial of Bayern Munich winger Franck Ribery and Real Madrid forward Karim Benzema on charges they solicited an underage prostitute has wrapped up with even the prosecutor seeking an acquittal.
The two footballers, who weren't present, face up to three years in prison if found guilty. The verdict was expected on Jan. 30.
Ribery's lawyer, Carlo Alberto Brusa, told The Associated Press on Thursday that his client was in Germany training "and calmly waiting to end this painful chapter."
He insisted the case has no basis, saying Ribery was unfairly targeted, and lamented the crossing of the "barrier between public and private life."
The prosecutor argued there wasn't enough proof the men were aware self-described escort Zahia Dehar, now 21, was a minor at the time.
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