Boris Becker sentenced to two years and six months in jail after bankruptcy sentencing

Becker was found guilty of four offences under the Insolvency Act earlier this month

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Boris Becker has been sentenced to two years and six months in jail after being convicted in a London bankruptcy case.

Judge Deborah Taylor handed down the sentence to the six-time Grand Slam singles champion at Southwark Crown Court.

Becker, who was handed a two-year suspended sentence for tax evasion and attempted tax evasion worth around £1.4 million in Germany in 2002, was found guilty of four offences under the Insolvency Act between June 21 and October 3 earlier this month.

Boris Becker arriving at Southwark Crown Court
Boris Becker arriving at Southwark Crown Court

Referring to his previous conviction, the judge said: “You did not heed the warning you were given and the chance you were given by the suspended sentence and that is a significant aggravating factor.”

She told Becker: “I take into account what has been described as your fall from grace.

“You have lost your career and reputation and all of your property as a result of your bankruptcy.”

But she added: “You have not shown remorse, acceptance of your guilt and have sought to distance yourself from your offending and your bankruptcy.

“While I accept your humiliation as part of the proceedings, there has been no humility.”

The former world number one, 54, was declared bankrupt on June 21 2017, owing creditors almost £50 million, over an unpaid loan of more than £3 million on his estate in Mallorca, Spain.

Becker transferred almost around £390,000 from his business account to others, including those of his ex-wife Barbara Becker and estranged wife Sharlely “Lilly” Becker.

The father-of-four also failed to declare his share in a £1 million property in his home town of Leimen, Germany, almost £700,000 bank loan – worth £1.1 million with interest – and concealed 75,000 shares in a tech firm, valued at £66,000.

Becker arrived at court holding the hand of partner Lilian de Carvalho Monteiro
Becker arrived at court holding the hand of partner Lilian de Carvalho Monteiro

He arrived at court on Friday wearing a tie in the colours of the Wimbledon tennis competition, while holding the hand of partner Lilian de Carvalho Monteiro, while his eldest son Noah carried a large Puma bag.

The tennis star told jurors his £38 million career earnings were swallowed up by an expensive divorce to his first wife Barbara, child maintenance payments and “expensive lifestyle commitments”.

The German national, who has lived in the UK since 2012, said he was “shocked” and “embarrassed” when he was declared bankrupt.

He claimed he had co-operated with trustees tasked with securing his assets, even offering up his wedding ring, and relied on the advisers who managed his life.

However, Becker was found guilty of four charges, including removal of property, two counts of failing to disclose estate and concealing debt.

Prosecutor Rebecca Chalkley said on Friday the jury had found he acted “deliberately and dishonestly”, but added: “Even now, Mr Becker is still seeking to blame others when it was obviously his duty.”

The court heard he received 1.13 million euros (about £950,000) from the sale of a Mercedes car dealership he owned in Germany into a business account used as his “piggy bank” for his personal expenses.

They included £7,600 on children’s school fees, almost £1,000 at Harrods, and payments made to Ralph Lauren, Porsche, Ocado and a Chelsea children’s club.

He also paid 48,000 euros (around £40,000) for an ankle operation at a private clinic and spent 6,000 euros (around £5,000) at a luxury golf resort in China, the court heard.

Becker was acquitted of 20 charges, including nine counts of failing to hand over trophies and medals from his tennis career.

He said he did not know the whereabouts of the memorabilia, including the 1985 Wimbledon title that catapulted him to stardom aged 17.

Becker was also cleared of failing to declare a second German property, as well as his interest in the £2.5 million Chelsea flat occupied by his daughter Anna Ermakova, who was conceived during Becker’s infamous sexual encounter with waitress Angela Ermakova at London restaurant Nobu in 1999.