Manchester City’s Benjamin Mendy faces additional rape charge

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Manchester City and France international footballer Benjamin Mendy has been charged with a further count of rape, a court was told on Wednesday.

The 27-year-old defender was already facing six allegations of rape and one of sexual assault but was charged last week with a seventh rape.

Restrictions on reporting the latest rape charge were lifted as Mendy appeared at Chester Crown Court for a preliminary hearing before his trial next year.

The charges relate to alleged offences against five different women in 2020 and this year.

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The footballer who lives in Prestbury, near Macclesfield, northwest England, appeared alongside his co-defendant Louis Saha Matturie, 40, from Eccles, on the outskirts of Manchester.

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Matturie is charged with six serious sex offences against young women.

Both men were remanded in custody after a 40-minute hearing. Their trial, which was scheduled to take place in January, was put back to later next year.

Mendy was a £52 million ($70 million) signing from Monaco in 2017 and has played 75 times for City but his playing time has been limited by injuries and a loss of form.

The last of his 10 caps for France came in November 2019.

The left-back won the World Cup with France in 2018. He has been suspended by the Premier League champions pending the outcome of the criminal proceedings.