Manchester City soccer star Benjamin Mendy and his friend locked women in rooms and confiscated their phones before raping them, a court has heard.
The left-back, 28, is accused of 10 offences against seven women between October 2018 and August last year, some of which are said to have taken place at his multimillion dollar home in north west England, The Sun reported.
He denies eight counts of rape, one count of sexual assault and one count of attempted rape.
Mendy’s co-defendant Louis Saha Matturie, 40, is accused of eight counts of rape and four counts of sexual assault relating to eight women, which he also denies.
The $89 million defender today arrived at Chester Crown Court for the first day of his trial.
Timothy Cray QC, opening for the prosecution, told the jury: “This case is another chapter in a very old story: men who rape and sexually assault women because they think they are powerful, and because they think they can get away with it.”
The court later heard how Mendy and Saha shut several of their victims in rooms in the footballer’s “isolated” mansion.
The women allegedly had their phones taken off them on arrival before being left in the study and master bedroom, which have “special locking doors” that can only be opened from within.
Mr Cray told jurors only someone who knew how to open the doors could do so, adding: “Two of witnesses allege rapes in those rooms and felt they were locked in.”
He went on to accuse Mendy of “treating women as though they existed purely for sex” and said the feeling of his alleged victims “counted for nothing”.
He added: “These women were disposable: things to be used for sex, then thrown to one side.
“That was the effect of deliberate, planned choices the defendants made, and the desires they let loose many times.”
He described Mendy as a “reasonably famous football player” who “because of his wealth and status, others were prepared to help him to get what he wanted”.
Mr Cray said Saha was Mendy’s friend and fixer, and one of his jobs was “to find young women and to create the situations where those young women could be raped and sexually assaulted”.
He added: “The acts that the defendants did together show callous indifference to the women they went after.
“In their minds, and this could not be clearer, the stream of women they brought to their homes existed purely to be pursued for sex.”
Mr Cray told jurors they will hear from 13 different women during the trial.
There are seven complainants against Mendy, and eight against Saha, with two complainants alleging both men raped them.
The average of the women concerned is 20 years and nine months.
Mr Cray said: “Our case is that the defendants’ pursuit of these 13 women turned them into predators, who were prepared to commit serious sexual offences.”
He added that “the fact they would not take ‘no’ for an answer” would be something the jurors will “hear time and time again”.
Mr Cray said there were five dates, between October 2018 and August 2021, when nine young women arrived at Mendy’s address.
They afterwards made complaints of rape and sexual assault against Mendy and Saha.
There are also four separate complaints against Saha involving allegations away from Mendy’s house, in Manchester and Sheffield.
But Mr Cray said Mendy’s home was “part and parcel” of how the defendants were able to abuse their alleged victims.
Once there, they were vulnerable for a number of reasons, including having their mobile phones taken away, the jury heard.
Differences in ages and wealth between the defendants and the complainants also made them vulnerable, he added.
“Vulnerable, scared, isolated – these are words you’ll hear from lots of the witnesses,” Mr Cray added.
“Ask yourselves, as you get under the skin of what was happening, who had the power and control in the situations these women experienced and you will hear about?”
One rape was allegedly carried out in July 2021 while Mendy was on police bail after his arrest in November 2020.
One of the charges was also carried out on August 23 – just three days before he was charged, it is said.
Mendy is also accused of raping a woman three times at a Cheshire mansion in October 2020.
And the French international allegedly sexually assaulted a woman in early January 2021.
Around 30 reporters packed the press benches as Mr Cray began his opening address.
Mendy was bailed in January after spending 134 days in custody following his arrest in August.
Premier League champions Man City spent a reported $89 million signing Mendy from French side Monaco in 2017.
He last played for the club on August 15, 2021, during their 1-0 defeat to Tottenham at the start of last season.
In September 2020, City boss Pep Guardiola revealed Mendy would be out of the game for at least a month due to an injury.
In a statement, the club later said: “Manchester City can confirm that following his being charged by police today, Benjamin Mendy has been suspended pending an investigation.
“The matter is subject to a legal process and the club is therefore unable to make further comment until that process is complete.”
This story was originally published by The Sun and was reproduced here with permission
Originally published as Manchester City soccer star Benjamin Mendy ‘raped young women in locked panic rooms’ court hears