Boris Becker no longer bankrupt, court says

Home » Boris Becker no longer bankrupt, court says

Former Wimbledon champion Boris Becker’s bankruptcy has officially ended, after a UK judge found he had done “all that he reasonably could do” to fulfil his financial obligations.

The German tennis player was declared bankrupt in June 2017, owing creditors almost £50m.

The High Court was told he still owed about £42m – but lawyers for Becker said the 56-year-old had reached a settlement agreement with the trustees appointed to oversee his finances.

They said Becker, who was jailed in 2022 for hiding £2.5m in assets to avoid paying debts, will provide a “substantial sum” into the bankruptcy estate.

Becker was catapulted to stardom, aged 17, in 1985 when he became the youngest singles male player to win the Wimbledon Championships.

He went on to win a further two Wimbledon titles, two Australian Opens and the US Open.

After retiring from tennis in 1999, he commentated at Wimbledon and turned his hand to coaching, working with Novak Djokovic.

He moved to London in 2012, and his bankruptcy stemmed from an unpaid loan of more than £3m on a luxury estate in Mallorca, Spain.

Although bankruptcy orders end after a year in England and Wales, a judge suspended the automatic discharge of the order in 2018 because Becker was “failing to comply with his obligations”.

Lawyers for Becker last month asked a judge to lift the suspension saying he had done “the best possible he is capable of doing”.

Giving written reasons for his decision, Chief Insolvency and Companies Court Judge Nicholas Briggs said said it would be “perverse” not to lift the suspension now.

He said: “On the spectrum of bankrupts who range from ‘difficult as possible and doing everything to frustrate the trustee’s inquiries’ to ‘co-operative, providing information and delivering up assets’, Mr Becker clearly falls on the right side of the line.”

The judge said an “unresolved matter” was the location of some of Becker’s trophies that are missing.

He noted Becker has no further information relating to the whereabouts of the trophies but did not object them being minted or monetised.

The judge said: “As the joint trustees are concerned to realise and distribute assets this offer provides a commercial outcome.”

Louis Doyle KC for Becker told the court the settlement agreement” affects a compromise of all outstanding matters in the bankruptcy although that is predicated on Mr Becker making payment which will have the effect of providing a substantial sum into the bankruptcy estate”.

He said the resolution with the trustees includes the “outstanding trophies” and that Becker “can’t do more than he has done to bring us to this point”.

Becker was jailed for two-and-a-half years in April 2022 at Southwark Crown Court after being found guilty of four offences.

He was acquitted of 25 other charges, including nine counts of failing to hand over trophies and medals from his tennis career.

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