After being linked to five armed robberies and initially sentenced to 46 months in prison, a Moroccan-Dutch footballer has been found not guilty.
Rabat – Moroccan-Dutch footballer Ismail H’Maidat has been acquitted of five robbery charges after spending nine months behind bars.
A Dutch court initially sentenced H’Maidat to 3 years and 10 months in prison.
The prosecutor charged the 23-year-old with carrying out five armed robberies near Turnhout, Belgium, on December 31, 2017 and on January 6, 2018.
H’Maidat and his accomplice allegedly stole cash from betting shops, a supermarket, and a gas station.
On March 13, police arrested him after tracing CCTV footage, using license plate recognition, and searching phone records.
A Court of Appeals in Belgium since cleared H’Maidat from robbery charges, setting him free.
The news broke via the player’s Instagram account two days ago.
H’Maidat begin his senior football career with Anderlecht in 2014 before heading to Italy to sign with Brescia the following year and then with Roma in 2016.
Since then, he transferred to two Italian clubs while on loan before joining Portuguese club Olhanense.
The footballer is a notorious troublemaker. His latest club, Westerlo, fired him in January 2018 for outrageous behavior off the pitch.
The midfielder reportedly earns £9,000 a month and transferred to Roma for £3.5 million in 2016.
H’Maidat made his first and only international appearance with Morocco’s national football team in 2016, with a friendly 4-0 win over Canada in October of the same year.