Boris Becker (54) sat for hours on Friday in front of judge Deborah Taylor, who just announced the sentence against the ex-tennis professional: Two and a half years in prison for money laundering, fraud and evasion in bankruptcy. Becker will actually have to spend half of it behind bars. Becker showed no emotion after the sentence. He grabbed an already packed bag and was escorted out of the room through a side door by a court clerk. Becker will probably be taken to a detention center on Saturday.
Becker still has an appeal against both the guilty verdict and the sentence.
After a lengthy exposition from District Attorney Rebecca Chalkley and a comparatively brief statement from Becker’s representative, Jonathan Laidlaw, there was a pause. Shortly before 4 p.m., Becker, his son and his girlfriend returned to the courtroom, where the anxious wait for the sentence continued. The judge was half an hour late. At 4:46 p.m., she announced the verdict.
As a tennis pro, Boris Becker has probably struggled with one or the other referee decision in his career. But never has there been so much at stake for the athlete as with Judge Deborah Taylor’s verdict on Friday. Three weeks ago, a jury found Becker guilty of four out of 24 charges. He intentionally withheld parts of his assets from his insolvency administrator. Including: accounts, real estate and even trophies. After the guilty verdict, the ex-tennis star had to give up his passport, but was released on bail.
In all likelihood, any sentence will be carried out in England, where prison conditions are harsher than in Germany. A transfer to Germany might be legally problematic.
A presumably expensive shopping spree by Becker last Thursday provided a topic of conversation. He is said to have been in the exclusive and very expensive London store “Harrods”.
Boris Becker himself had apparently expected a longer prison sentence in advance. According to British media reports, he has spent a lot of time with his loved ones and his partner in recent days Lilian de Carvalho and his children. Even ex-wife Lily Becker should he have met. But Becker’s biggest supporter in the case is probably his mother Elvira Becker. She asked the court not to send her son to prison: “All things considered, he’s a decent guy!”