Zahia Dehar

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Zahia Dehar
Born (1992-02-25) February 25, 1992 (age 22)
Ghriss, Algeria
Nationality French
Occupation lingerie designer, former prostitute[1][2]
Years active 2010–present
Website
Official

Zahia Dehar (born 25 February 1992 in Ghriss, Algeria) is a French lingerie designer[3] and model best known for her role in an underage prostitution scandal.[4]

Personal life[edit]

She was born in Ghriss, Algeria, in 1992.[4] When she moved to Champigny-sur-Marne, France with her mother and younger brother at the age of 10, she spoke no French.[4] Her father, Hacène Dehar, still lives in Algeria. He has refused any form of contact with his daughter ever since the prostitution allegations appeared.[5]

Sex scandal[edit]

In 2008, when she was 17, Dehar was allegedly paid for sex by Sebastian Ariza Medina, and by Franck Ribéry and Karim Benzema with the latter two both being players on the French national football team.[6] The age of consent in France is 15, but prostitution is legal only if the worker is over the age of 18.[7] The investigation began in 2010, just before the French team participated in the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which would involve Franck Ribéry but not Karim Benzema. The then current French national team manager Raymond Domenech cited Benzema's struggle for form with his new club Real Madrid rather than his alleged involvement in the sex scandal as his reason for excluding the striker from the squad.[8]

Additionally, Dehar achieved celebrity status.[6] If convicted, the players would have faced up to three years in prison and a €45,000 fine each,[6] while Dehar faced no criminal charges, as prostituting oneself is not a crime under French law. In November 2011, prosecutors asked for the cases against Ribéry and Benzema be dropped, saying that the players were not aware that Dehar was a minor.[2]

Dehar's involvement in the scandal and other acts, such as posting indiscreet photos on Twitter, have earned her the nickname la scandaleuse (literally, "the scandalous one") in the French press.[4]

Model and fashion designer[edit]

In 2010 while at the height of national attention, she paid to appear as a fashion model, and appeared on the cover of the Spanish version of V magazine in 2011.[4] She has claimed to have had dreams to be a fashion designer since childhood. Capitalizing on her celebrity and working with German designer Karl Lagerfeld, she created a lingerie line[4] and self-named perfume.[9] The lingerie line premiered at the January 2012 Paris Fashion Week fashion show.[10] Her line caters to high-end customers, with garments on sale for over €500 each.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Peter Allen Published at 15:46 GMT, 20 January 2014. ""Underage prostitute who allegedly slept with two of France's highest paid footballers 'no longer considers herself a victim'"". 
  2. ^ a b "French prosecutors accept that Ribery did not know prostitute was a minor". France 24. 19 November 2011. 
  3. ^ Stefanie Marsh Published at 5:28PM, 27 October 2012 (27 October 2012). "Zahia Dehar: from sex scandal to the Paris catwalk". The Times. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f Rebecca Benhamou. "France’s Courtesan Couture: Zahia Dehar - Newsweek and The Daily Beast". Thedailybeast.com. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 
  5. ^ Salmon, Ludivine (August 5, 2010). "Zahia: la vraie histoire d'une gamine de banlieue". VSD No 1719.
  6. ^ a b c Angelique Chrisafis in Paris (13 February 2013). "France international under suspicion of soliciting underage prostitute | Football | guardian.co.uk". Guardian. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 
  7. ^ "Top French footballer linked to under-age prostitution probe | Football - News | NDTVSports.com". Sports.ndtv.com. Agence France-Presse. 13 February 2013. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 
  8. ^ Petrequin, Samuel (11 May 2010). "Benzema left out of France's World Cup squad". Associated Press. 
  9. ^ "Joyeux anniversaire Zahia Dehar !" (in French). aufeminin. 25 February 2013. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 
  10. ^ "Paris Fashion Week 2012: French Escort Zahia Dehar Debuts Lingerie Line [PHOTOS]". Ibtimes.com. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 
  11. ^ "Zahia Dehar et les ex-Lejaby collaborent pour de la lingerie Haute Couture made in France" (in French). Terrafemina. Retrieved 4 March 2013. 

External links[edit]