Updated 04/29/2022 07:16
- A jury found former German tennis player Boris Becker guilty of 4 out of 24 charges.
- But what are the consequences?
- Now the London judge announces the sentence.
A fateful day for a tennis legend: Friday (13:00 CEST) in the criminal trial against Boris Becker, the sentence is eagerly awaited. The former exceptional athlete could theoretically face several years in prison because he did not disclose assets worth more than one million euros in his bankruptcy proceedings.
Three weeks ago, a jury found Becker guilty of several charges. However, he can still appeal later, both against the guilty verdict and against the sentence. The 54-year-old had denied the allegations.
Judge Becker has already ruled on Julian Assange
Secular judges at London’s Southwark Crown Court, on the other hand, had come to the conclusion that Becker had hidden property in his hometown of Leimen, illegally transferred large sums to other accounts, and withheld stock in an artificial intelligence company.
Judge Deborah Taylor decides on the sentence against the German. In May 2019, the same judge sentenced WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to 50 weeks in prison for violating his bail conditions.
Even legal experts aren’t clear on what punishment Becker is now threatening. Observers are confident that Judge Taylor will not impose the maximum sentence of seven years. It is assumed that it is quite likely that Becker must be in custody.
Defense Line: Becker is naive but innocent
The prosecutor had raised a total of 24 charges against Becker. Attorney Rebecca Chalkley discovered that she had deliberately hidden numerous assets and was now blaming her advisers, who he said had managed her finances. The tennis legend’s advocate had said his client was naive but innocent. The jury followed this line of argument in 20 points, including on the issue of missing trophies.
But the four-count guilty verdict may be enough to fundamentally change Becker’s life. “This belief is a clear warning to those who believe they can hide their wealth and get away with it. They will be investigated and prosecuted,” the bankruptcy authority said.
Becker, who lives in London, was declared bankrupt in 2017. He then had to reveal his assets to the bankruptcy trustees – but according to the jury he left out important parts.
Where did the Becker millions go?
The three-time Wimbledon winner had raised around $ 25 million in prize money during his career and, according to his own estimates, earned about the same amount from advertising. However, he had financial problems. Becker accused in court the costly divorce from ex-wife Barbara and the high costs of supporting his daughter Anna Ermakowa.
Among other things, Becker comments on tennis tournaments for the BBC and is very popular with the British. His partner Lilian De Carvalho Monteiro accompanied him to court every day, more recently at her side was also her eldest son Noah.
Becker has also received encouragement from other celebrities. “Boris didn’t rob poor grandmothers,” entertainer Thomas Gottschalk said after the “Bild” newspaper was sentenced. In the worst case, “some wealthy financiers who wanted to adorn themselves with the fame of the tennis idol have become a little poorer.” “My sympathy for them is limited,” 71-year-old Gottschalk quoted “Bild”.
After Boris Becker’s guilty verdict in the London criminal trial, the 54-year-old is now being assisted by Thomas Gottschalk. “Boris did not rob poor grandmothers,” says the entertainer of the newspaper “Bild”. And he finds other clear words.