• Friday, July 19, 2024
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BusinessDay

Pogba’s brother Mathias to face trial in kidnap case

Mathias Pogba

French prosecutors have recommended that six individuals, including Paul Pogba‘s brother, Mathias Pogba, face trial in connection with the alleged extortion and kidnapping of the French football star. This information comes from sources involved in the case, as reported by AFP.

According to the indictments, five close associates of Paul Pogba meticulously planned a meeting in the Paris suburbs on March 19, 2022. During this meeting, Pogba, the former Manchester United and Juventus midfielder, was kidnapped and held by two unidentified men who demanded €13 million ($14 million) from him.

While Mathias Pogba was not present at this meeting, he is accused of subsequently pressuring his brother to comply with the extortion demands. All the accused have denied any wrongdoing, asserting that they were victims of armed robbers and were assaulted after Paul Pogba refused to pay.

Prosecutors are calling for three childhood friends and two former acquaintances from Pogba’s hometown to be tried for extortion, illegal restraint, and criminal conspiracy. Previously, these individuals were charged with extortion with a weapon and kidnapping in an organized gang, along with criminal conspiracy.

The decision on whether to proceed with the trial will now be made by an investigating judge. Paul Pogba, who is currently suspended for four years due to doping, initially reported the blackmail attempt to Italian prosecutors on July 16, 2022. He claimed that his blackmailers were attempting to discredit him by alleging he had asked a holy man to cast a spell on then Paris Saint-Germain and France star Kylian Mbappe, which Pogba denies.

The investigation, which began on September 2, 2022, was jointly conducted by the French police’s anti-gang and central crime units. In late September, Mathias Pogba posted videos on social media accusing Paul of abandoning his family. He later claimed during the investigation that he had been manipulated by the other suspects and expressed hope for reconciliation with his brother.

Prosecutors argue that the relationship between the Pogba brothers has been strained for years, primarily over financial matters. Intercepted conversations in the summer of 2022 revealed Mathias’s intention to obtain payment from Paul under threat.