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Monday, Mar 20, 2023

French judges launch probe into kidnap, torture allegations against Qatari president of PSG

French judges launch probe into kidnap, torture allegations against Qatari president of PSG

The Qatari president of football club Paris Saint-Germain, Nasser Al-Khelaifi, is being investigated by French authorities over allegations that he oversaw the kidnapping and torture of a man who threatened to release compromising sex tapes gathered from his personal phone, The Daily Telegraph reported.
Tayeb Benabderrahmane, a French Algerian lobbyist, claimed to have been detained in Qatar in 2020 for possessing “sensitive” documents, as well as a personal phone belonging to Al-Khelaifi that allegedly contained sex tapes.

Three Paris judges will examine a complaint filed by Benabderrahmane last summer over the alleged incident.

Radio channel France Inter reported that the lobbyist possessed documents relating to Qatar’s World Cup 2022 hosting bid as well as the beIN Media — of which Al-Khelaifi is president — being awarded television rights to the 2026 and 2030 FIFA World Cups.

Benabderrahmane allegedly collected the documents and personal phone through Al-Khelaifi’s butler, court documents show.

The lobbyist, in his complaint, accuses the PSG president of “sponsoring” his kidnapping and detainment, adding that he was only permitted to leave the Gulf country once he signed a confidentiality agreement.

Al-Khelaifi has denied the allegations, and in a statement said: “You are talking about professional criminals. They’ve changed their lawyers more times than they’ve changed their stories and their lies.

“It is the ultimate media manipulation. I’m just amazed so many people have taken their lies and contradictions as credible — but that’s the media world we’re in today.

“Justice will run its course — I don’t have time to talk about petty professional criminals.”

Late last year, Al-Khelaifi was cleared in court in a case concerning the awarding of television rights for the World Cup.

In September 2022, Benabderrahmane, as well as two French ex-police officers, faced theft, invasion of privacy, and violation of professional secrecy charges after allegedly conspiring to blackmail Al-Khelaifi using copies of the compromising documents and sex tapes.

Al-Khelaifi’s legal team have argued that Benabderrahmane is using false allegations of corruption against the PSG president as a way to distract prosecutors from his own blackmail charges.

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