A police investigation into allegations that France football star Paul Pogba was targeted by extortionists took a bizarre new twist on Friday.
More than 30 videos of Paul’s elder brother Mathias Pogba, one of the suspects, reading from a lengthy statement, were posted on Twitter. These clippings took aim at the 2018 World Cup winner, his entourage and wealthy lifestyle.
It wasn’t clear exactly when the videos were filmed. But it may have been before Mathias turned himself in for police questioning last week. He has reportedly been held in custody since. Recording the videos appeared to have been a time-consuming exercise, because he wore three different T-shirts.
“If you are watching this video that will be because my brother Paul Pogba has found a way to silence me,” Mathias said in the first footage of the series. “I record this video so that whatever happens, everything is revealed.”
The words “insurance video, held in a safe place” were written on top of many of the videos. They followed through on previous social media posts where Mathias had threatened to make explosive revelations about his brother, who plays for Juventus.
Mathias and four others were handed preliminary charges last Saturday and jailed in the extortion probe, French prosecutors have said.
In the latest series of recordings, Mathias accused his multi-millionaire brother of having abandoned members of their family, leaving them in poverty. He also claimed that the midfielder mixed with criminals and he repeated claims that Paul employed a witch doctor.
The videos were also accompanied by a series of tweets and a statement addressed to Paul. The first post in the long thread said it had been sent automatically by “my bot.”
“That also means that I am no longer free,” the message read.