Achraf Hakimi, a defender for Paris Saint-Germain and one of the stars of Morocco’s historic run to the World Cup semifinals last year, was charged with rape on Friday.
Prosecutors questioned Hakimi, 24, on Thursday about allegations made by an unidentified 24-year-old woman. Hakimi was charged.
On Friday, the player from Madrid went to work out with his teammates.
A spokesperson for PSG stated that the team “places its trust in the justice system” and “gives its support” to Hakimi.
The player’s attorney stated that the player denied the allegations and welcomed the opportunity to clear his name.
Hakimi allegedly paid for his accuser to travel to his home in Boulogne-Billancourt, a suburb of Paris, on Saturday while his family was on vacation.
According to people familiar with the case, the woman went to a police station on Sunday and was questioned by prosecutors on Wednesday.
Prosecutors decided to charge the player despite the woman’s refusal to make a formal accusation.
In Qatar, Hakimi was a foundation of the Morocco group that turned into the principal African or Bedouin country to arrive at the semi-finals of a World Cup.
He was named to the FIFPro men’s world team of the year at the FIFA Best awards ceremony on Monday in Paris.
Hakimi’s attorney, Fanny Colin, stated that he “firmly denies all the accusations against him” and was the target of “an attempted racket.”
She stated that “he finally has the possibility to defend himself” and that Hakimi accepted the charge that was brought against him.
“Refused to make a formal accusation and refused to have a medical or psychological examination,” Colin stated of the accuser of Hakimi.
The lawyer for the alleged victim, Rachel-Flore Pardo, told AFP: My customer sticks to everything she said. She chose to speak only with prosecutors and does not want the affair to be reported in the media, primarily for her own safety.”
In accordance with French law, being charged does not always mean that the case will be tried.
PSG, the defending champions of France, take on Nantes on Saturday at home before traveling to Germany on Wednesday to try to overcome a 1-0 first-leg deficit against Bayern Munich in the Champions League semifinals.
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