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Boris Becker‘s mother has begged a judge not to send her son to prison, after he was found guilty of hiding his millions and breaking UK insolvency laws.
The 86-year-old said that her son is ‘a decent boy overall’, as he faces a prison sentence of up to seven years.
‘I hope my son doesn’t have to go to prison,’ said Elvira Becker, the Mirror reported.
The three-time Wimbledon champion, 54, was accused of hiding millions of pounds worth of assets, including two Wimbledon trophies, to avoid paying his debts following his 2017 bankruptcy.
On Friday, the six-time Grand Slam champion was found guilty of four charges under the Insolvency Act and acquitted of a further 20 counts at Southwark Crown Court.
Becker, a former world tennis number one, was declared bankrupt in June 2017 over an unpaid loan of more than £3million on his estate in Mallorca, Spain.
Elvira Becker, 86, said she hopes that her ‘overall decent son’ does not gave to go to prison, after he was found guilty of breaking UK insolvency laws
Boris Becker arriving at Southwark Crown Court in London this week alongside partner Lilian de Carvalho Monteiroover
Becker was found guilty of removal of property regarding 426,930 Euros (£350,000) to nine recipients including his ex-wives Barbara and Sharlely ‘Lilly’ Becker (pictured here with Becker)
Tennis ace Becker allegedly squirrelled money away by sending huge sums to his first wife Barbara (pictured together in 2000)
Becker was found guilty of removal of property regarding 426,930 Euros (£350,000) to nine recipients including his ex-wives Barbara and Lilly
Boris Becker’s charge sheet
Removal of property – Between 02/05/17 to 28/09/17 – GUILTY
Bankrupt failing to disclose estate – GUILTY
Bankrupt concealing debt – GUILTY
Failing to disclose estate – GUILTY
Concealing property – Between 14/05/17 and 21/06/17
Bankrupt concealing property – Between 21/06/17 and 13/09/17
Removal of property – Between 02/05/17 to 28/09/17
Concealing – on 16/05/17
Concealing – on 17/05/17
Failing to disclose estate
Bankrupt failing to deliver up – ALL NOT GUILTY
Failing to disclose – NOT GUILTY;
All England Tennis Lawn Tennis Club (AELTC) cup he won in 1985
President’s Cup 1985
Davis Cup Gold Coin 1988
Davis Cup Gold Coin 1989
President’s Cup 1989
Australian Open Trophy 1991
Olympic Gold Medal 1992
Australian Open Trophy 1996
But he continued to spend hundreds of pounds at luxury department store Harrods, bought online groceries at Ocado and treated himself to designer Ralph Lauren clothes, jurors had heard.
He also allegedly hid around £950,000 from the sale of a Mercedes car dealership he owns in Germany, which was paid into his Boris Becker Private Office (BBPOL) account.
Becker was found guilty of removal of property regarding 426,930 Euros (£350,000) to nine recipients including his ex-wives Barbara and Sharlely ‘Lilly’ Becker.
He was also convicted of trying to conceal the ownership of his £1.8million villa ‘Im Schilling’ in his native Leimen, Germany, as well as his ownership of 75,000 Data Corp shares.
Jurors also found him guilty of concealing a loan of 825,000 Euros (£688,000) owed by him to the Bank Alpinum of Lichtenstein.
But he was cleared of all other charges including failing to hand over nine tennis trophies including those won at the 1985 and 1989 Wimbledon tournament, the 1991 and 1996 Australian Open and the 1992 Olympics. He could face a maximum seven years in jail.
Becker won his first Wimbledon title in 1985 when he was just 17 years and 228 days old to become the youngest men’s singles champion at SW19. He appeared in 77 finals and won 49 singles titles during his 16 years as a tennis pro.
On Friday, the troubled star was supported in court by his partner Lilian de Carvalho Monteiro as he arrived in court wearing a grey coat and maroon scarf.
He denied 24 offences under the Insolvency Act relating to his June 2017 bankruptcy over a £3.5million loan from private bank Arbuthnot Latham for a villa in Mallorca.
But, after considering its verdicts for 12 hours and 17 minutes, the jury convicted him of removing property, two counts of failing to disclose estate and failing to disclose a debt after considering its verdicts for 12 hours and 17 minutes.
Becker was cleared of 20 other charges under the Insolvency Act, 1986.
In a bid to hide money from his creditors, Becker transferred 426,930 Euros to nine recipients including his ex-wives Barbara and Lilly Becker.
Becker also hid his ownership of a luxury villa in his native Leimen, Germany, where his mother currently resides.
He also failed to disclose a £620,000 debt as well as his stake of 75,000 shares in AI firm Breaking Data Corp.
But he was cleared of all other charges including failing to hand over nine tennis trophies including those won at the 1985 and 1989 Wimbledon tournament, the 1991 and 1996 Australian Open and the 1992 Olympics.
Smartly dressed in a dark pinstripe suit and supported by his son Noah and his girlfriend, Becker showed no emotion as he heard the verdicts.
The former world number one, who has been one of the BBC’s leading commentators at Wimbledon for years, was said to have failed to declare two German properties, his interest in a £2.25million flat in Chelsea, occupied by his daughter Anna Ermakova.
The 54-year-old commentator was declared bankrupt in June 2017 after borrowing around £3.5 million from private bank Arbuthnot Latham for this property in Mallorca
Becker, a former world tennis number one, was declared bankrupt in June 2017 over an unpaid loan of more than £3million on his estate (pictured) in Mallorca, Spain
Becker was cleared of all other charges including failing to hand over nine tennis trophies including those won at the 1985 and 1989 Wimbledon tournament, the 1991 and 1996 Australian Open and the 1992 Olympics. He could face a maximum seven years in jail
Giving evidence, occasionally assisted by a German interpreter, Becker insisted he did not know the full extent of his assets and did not set out to conceal anything.
Becker set up two companies in order to reorganise his finances after moving to the UK.
But the day after he was declared bankrupt, Becker stepped down as sole director of his company BBPOL and his then-wife Sharlely ‘Lilly’ Becker was appointed in his place.
After stepping away as the director he continued to use the company bank account in a ‘personal capacity’.
After being declared bankrupt, Becker used that account to transfer money to other accounts belonging to him as well as others including Lilly and his ex-wife Barbara Becker.
‘It is the prosecution case it is no coincidence that the payments increased both in amount and frequency the very day after the order was served,’ said Rebecca Chalkley, prosecuting.
‘The prosecution say that is a further effort to distance himself from this bank account and the sums in it.’
Some of his trophies were auctioned off for £700,000 to pay his debts and he has made various appeals to try to locate them
Becker was accused of concealing three properties from his creditors, including a villa and apartment in Leimen, Germany and the luxury flat his daughter used in Chelsea.
Ms Chalkley said the former champion paid Barbara £19,000, his estranged wife Sharlely ‘Lilly’ Becker £83,000 and transferred £225,000 to a friend.
He allegedly also transferred £249,000 to his own account, while other funds went into an account he jointly held with his son Noah, while cash was hidden from creditors.
Asked why he failed to do so, Becker claimed he didn’t believe he was the owner of these properties and he had to disclose them.
Giving evidence Becker revealed how he faced massive backlash and his first wife Barbara, a black woman, received death threats after the two started dating.
‘Members of the media wanted me to be with a German-looking blonde wife,’ said Becker.
‘After we got married and got first seen she had threats to her life, that were covered by the police.’
Becker kisses the Gentleman’s trophy to celebrate his victory during the 1985 Men’s Singles final. It was his first Wimbledon title
Jurors heard that Becker became ’emotional’ and ‘frustrated’ when he was asked to hand over nine tennis trophies he won over his career to pay for his debts.
Despite the trophies being of relatively ‘low value’, Becker said he did not know their current whereabouts and he couldn’t produce them.
Ms Chalkley told jurors they may well feel sympathy towards Becker as far as the demand he hand over his tennis trophies is concerned.
‘These trophies are assets of value and he ought to have at least given them to the trustees for valuation,’ she said.
‘It is Mr Becker’s case he didn’t know and does not know where these trophies were, some of the most significant of his sporting career.’
Jurors heard that Becker not knowing the location of the trophies that ‘defined his career’ is ‘simply not credible’.
After numerous attempts to recover these trophies, including a BBC campaign, they are yet to be found.
‘Ask yourself if the reason for this is Boris Becker knew they were safely tucked away and therefore there would be no information about where they were,’ said Ms Chalkley.
The former tennis star even offered his wedding ring to bankruptcy trustees in order to pay off his debts.
Becker told the court he was left without any property after selling off two houses in Leimen, Germany, and a luxury flat in Chelsea in order to pay off his debt.
The twice married former tennis champ had been convicted of tax evasion in Germany in 2002, for maintaining properties in Germany while being registered in Monaco.
‘In short the issues boil down to day to day issues of dishonesty and that is what is at the heart of this case,’ said Ms Chalkley.
‘This case concerns Mr Becker’s conduct in connection with the bankruptcy.
‘The alleged offences occurred both before and after he was made subject of a bankruptcy order.’
The prosecutor said Becker a ‘£3million to £3.5million’ loan from private bank Arbuthnot Latham for the property in Mallorca, Spain known as ‘the Finca’.
But the bank started legal proceedings against Becker in July 2016 after he failed to pay them back.
Becker repeatedly tried to get the case thrown out of court before he was made bankrupt on 21 June 2017.
Becker, of Battersea, denied, and was convicted of, removal of property, two counts of failing to disclose estate and one count of concealing debt.
He was cleared of seven charges of concealing property, nine counts of failing to disclose trophies, one count of removing property required by the receiver, four counts of failing to disclose details of his estate.
The prosecution was brought by the Insolvency Service on behalf of Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng.
He had been bailed conditionally with requirements to live and sleep at his Battersea address, that his passport remain with his solicitors to provide his solicitors with his passport when not travelling.
He faces sentence at Southwark Crown Court on April 29.
The rise and fall of a tennis legend: How Boris Becker went from Wimbledon teen sensation, to conceiving a child in a Mayfair restaurant, bankruptcy and facing seven years in prison
Few spots stars have ever hit the height of Boris Becker’s tennis careers – and none as young as the German ace.
Born in Leimen, West Germany, in 1967, Becker, the son of an architect father and a Czech immigrant mother, was thrust into the world of tennis from a young age.
His father founded a tennis centre in the town, where Becker honed his skills early on.
By the age of 10, in 1977, he was a member of the junior team of the Baden Tennis Association.
He went on to win the South German championship and the first German Youth Tennis Tournament.
After winning funding for training from the German Tennis Federation, he turned professional at 16 in 1984, winning the Tennis World Young Masters at the NEC in Birmingham in 1985, before claiming victory at Queens in June.
In July 1985, aged 17, he entered Wimbledon as an unseeded player and took the tournament by storm, beating Kevin Curren by four sets in the final
Two weeks later, in July, aged 17, he entered Wimbledon as an unseeded player and took the tournament by storm, beating Kevin Curren by four sets in the final.
At just 17 years and 228 days old he became the youngest men’s singles champion at SW19 – and immediately became a household name.
The following year he defend his title, beating then world number one Ivan Lendl to secure back-to-back Wimbledon titles.
He appeared in 77 finals and won 49 singles titles during his 16 years as a tennis pro.
But by 1993, facing criticism over his marriage to wife Barbara and tax problems with the German government, had caused Becker to slide into a severe mid-career decline.
In 1997, Becker lost to Sampras in the quarterfinals at Wimbledon. After that match, he vowed that he would never play at Wimbledon again.
However he returned one more time to the prestigious west London tennis club, in 1999, this time losing in the fourth round to Patrick Rafter.
Off the court, his personal troubles continued. He had to pay £2.4million after he fathered a daughter, named Anna, with a Russian model while married to wife Barbara.
That incident took place after he crashed out of Wimbledon to Rafter in 1999 and decided to retire from the sport, aged 31.
Becker, in his 2003 autobiography, Stay A Moment Longer, revealed how he ‘cried my eyes out’ and felt the need to go out for a few beers with friends.
However his then wife Barbara, seven months’ pregnant with their second son, wanted him to stay at their hotel with her.
But by 1993, facing criticism over his marriage to wife Barbara and tax problems with the German government, had caused Becker to slide into a severe mid-career decline
‘She couldn’t and wouldn’t understand that she suddenly wasn’t first in my priorities,’ said Becker.
‘I said, ‘Just once more with the lads, Barbara, just once more to say farewell and then it’s only you’. That didn’t work. We rowed for two whole hours. Suddenly she was in pain and decided to check into hospital.;
Becker said he told his wife to call him if the baby was really on the way, then hit the town.
By 11pm he was at the bar in Mayfair’s Nobu and spotted Russian model Angela Ermakowa. The pair had sex on the staircase in the London outpost.
The following February his secretary handed him a fax in his Munich office. It read: ‘Dear Herr Becker, We met in Nobu in London. The result of that meeting is now eight months old.’
He later split from his first wife Barbara Feltus, a divorce which is estimated to have cost him more than £15million, as well as their home in Miami.
Becker found a new post-tennis purpose soon after, joining the BBC for its annual coverage of Wimbledon – to great success.
But his personal problems continued. He had a short engagement to Alessandra Meyer-Wölden in 2008, before announcing that he and Dutch model Sharlely ‘Lilly’ Kerssenberg would marry in 2009.
After nine years of marriage, and a child, Becker’s fourth, the pair split in 2018.
A year earlier, Becker had been declared bankrupt in June 2017 over an unpaid loan of more than £3million on his estate in Mallorca, Spain.
His former business partner, Hans-Dieter Cleven, also claimed that the former tennis ace owed him more than £30million – though the case that was rejected by a Swiss court.
Now Becker faces another bump in the road – perhaps the most serious yet – after being found guilty of four counts relating to the Insolvency Act.
He faces up to seven years in prison – with his freedom now left hanging in the balance ahead of his sentencing at the end of this month.
Source: Daily Mail