Mendy tells UK rape trial he had 'sex with a lot of women'

Manchester City defender Benjamin Mendy began testifying Monday as he stands trial for multiple alleged rapes, saying he had sex with many women but always stopped if they said "no".

The 28-year-old French footballer spoke at Chester Crown Court in northwest England after pleading not guilty to all charges in the long-running case, which began in August.

The Premier League star is accused of a string of sexual offences including rape, attempted rape and sexual assault, while his co-accused and "fixer", Louis Saha Matturie, is accused of six counts of rape and three of sexual assault.

Mendy has already been found not guilty of one additional rape charge.

Alleged victims have told the court that Mendy forced women to have sex at his mansion, locking them inside rooms.

Prosecutor Timothy Cray told the court in August that Mendy and Matturie  were "predators, who were prepared to commit serious sexual offences".

But both men say if any sex with women did take place, it was consensual.

Mendy responded to questions from his defence team, saying that he was used to drawing women's attention because of his "status" as a footballer, first at Marseille and then at Manchester City.

"The way they came to me, it's not because of my look, it's because of football," he told the court.

He told the court that he enjoyed "having sex with a lot of women".

But, he said, if a woman said "no" he would "be fine, I'd accept it and I'd stop".

"At the time I was not thinking like how they were feeling or they can be upset," he added, however.

"Because, for me, if they wanted to have sex and I wanted to, everything was fine and I would carry on my partying."

He said he had seen it as "normal" to sleep with several women in one night and "didn't worry" about using contraception, acknowledging he could be "disrespectful" in talking about women.

Mendy said that his time in prison awaiting trial from August last year had made him "realise a lot of things" and see that "inside I had some pain".

Mendy joined Premier League champions City from French side Monaco in 2017.

He was suspended by City after being charged by police in August last year.