Djibril Cisse, the former Liverpool and Marseille striker, could however be dragged into the investigation with prosecutors calling for him to be formally charged.

The scandal cost Benzema a place in France's Euro 2016 squad on home soil this year and he is yet to return to the international fold.

Investigators suspect 28-year-old Benzema of acting as an intermediary between the presumed blackmailers -- including one of his childhood friends -- and Lyon midfielder Valbuena.

Benzema and three of the other suspects have asked for the case against them to be dropped.

They say police used "dishonest" methods by posing as a friend of Valbuena's in a telephone conversation with one of the accused.

Cisse meanwhile is said to have informed Valbuena that "rumours" were circulating about the existence of the sextape.

The 35-year-old was arrested in the investigation in 2015 but was released without charge.

He said in a TV interview at the time that he had only been arrested "so the investigators could hear my side of the story. I never swindled anyone -- Mathieu is a friend".