Tennis ace Boris Becker’s trophies ‘auctioned for £700,000 to pay debts’

Trophies won by tennis ace Boris Becker have been auctioned off for £700,000 to pay his debts, a court has heard.

The six-time Grand Slam champion, 54, is accused of failing to hand over nine more awards, including two of his three Wimbledon men’s singles titles and an Olympic gold medal, after being declared bankrupt in June 2017.

Southwark Crown Court was told on Thursday that BBC commentator Becker was “frustrated” with the bankruptcy process, which continues to this day.

He also felt ‘badly treated’ by private bank Arbuthnot Latham, who brought proceedings over a debt of more than £3million over a loan on his property in Mallorca, Spain – part of which was subject to at an annual interest rate of 25%. .

Administrator Mark Ford – one of those tasked with recovering Becker’s assets – said he had a ‘strained’ relationship with the sports star, who became ’emotional’ when talking about trophies he said have lost control.

The jury heard that in a conversation with Mr Ford, the tennis star said: “Mark, do you think, given the fact that I now face criminal charges in relation to these trophies, that if I had access to them, wouldn’t I have given them to you?

Becker’s lawyer, Jonathan Laidlaw QC, explained that the trophies the players are allowed to keep are miniature versions of those displayed on the pitch, showing jurors his replica of the 1986 President’s Cup.

He said the trophy was given by Becker to his mother, along with his Wimbledon title from the same year, and neither was included in the charges against him.

The court heard how other memorabilia taken from Becker and his mother’s German home were sold to pay his debts.

The former Wimbledon champion is accused of hiding funds and failing to hand over trophies to settle his debts (PA)

“There was an auction that brought in something like £700,000,” Mr Laidlaw said.

German Becker, who has won 49 singles titles in 77 finals over 16 years, is denying 24 charges under insolvency law.

They include nine counts of failure to deliver trophies and other awards, seven of concealment of property, five of non-disclosure of estate, two of removal of property and one of concealment of debts.

As well as failing to offer memorabilia, including his 1991 and 1996 Australian Open trophies and his Davis Cup trophy and gold coin, Becker is accused of hiding $1.13 million euros (about £950,000) from the sale of a Mercedes car dealership he owned in Germany.

The money was allegedly paid into his Boris Becker Private Office Ltd business account, which he used as a “piggy bank” to pay for personal expenses, such as his children’s school fees, the court heard.

Becker allegedly transferred hundreds of thousands of pounds to other accounts, including those of his ex-wife Barbara Becker and ex-wife Sharlely “Lilly” Becker.

Becker in a tennis match during his playing days
Becker won dozens of titles during his career

He also allegedly failed to declare two German properties, as well as his interest in a £2.25million flat in Chelsea, west London, occupied by his daughter Anna Ermakova, and concealed a £825 bank loan. 000 euros (nearly £700,000) as well as shares. in a technology company.

The court heard Becker, who is supported in court by his partner Lilian de Carvalho Monteiro, was previously convicted of tax evasion and attempted tax evasion in Germany in 2002.

The trial continues.