A SEMI-PROFESSIONAL foot-baller who entered the UK using a false identity has had assets worth £25,000 confiscated by a judge.
Romanian Lorand Borbely, who played for Deeping Rangers and Boston Town for six years under his assumed identity of Laszlo Lovas, was jailed for 11 months earlier this year after admitting a string of immigration and deception offences.
Borbely, 29, of Church Green Road, Fishtoft, near Boston, has now served his sentence and appeared back before Lincoln Crown Court on Wednesday for a confiscation hearing.
Judge Sean Morris ruled that Borbely benefited from his crimes by £751,000 and had available assets of £25,000.
That money, which includes rental income from five properties Borbely purchased on mortgage, has to be paid within six months or Borbely will face a further 14 months in jail.
The footballer, who was also a director at Boston Town, has already served the 11-month sentence imposed in September and has now been released.
Borbely, who drove around in a Mercedes Benz, used his uncle’s name to acquire a Hungarian passport. Then, after entering the UK in 2004, he obtained bank loans and mortgages of more than half a million pounds to finance his activities.
Borbely failed to attract any suspicion from the authorities because he always made his mortgage repayments on time.
But he eventually came to the attention of the UK Border Agency following an anonymous tip-off.
Simon Rowe, prosecuting, told the original hearing that the documents used by Borbely to enter the UK were “thoroughly convincing”.
At the time Hungary was about to become a full member of the European Union, whereas Romania did not achieve the same status for another three years.
Mr Rowe added: “There were no suspicions that his passport was in any way fraudulent.
“He indicated his sole motivation for doing this was because he knew Hungary was going into the EU and he could get into the UK and work under that false identity as long as no-one knew about it.”
Borbely initially worked as a casual agricultural labourer before moving into the property market, eventually obtaining five mortgages to buy properties in the Boston area, which he rented out to fellow migrants.
When he was eventually brought to justice, it was revealed that all payments on his mortgages and the £27,000 loan for his car were up to date.
Borbely was gradually switching to his true identity at the time he was caught, carrying out the business of L Rentals in his real name.
Mr Rowe said: “None of the businesses he unlawfully obtained money from have lost out.”
Alison Summers, mitigating, said: “This is a case where unusually that credit has been obtained and no loss has been incurred.
“It was not his intention to make quick financial gain before disappearing. His motivation was prosperity and economic opportunity.
“He desperately wanted to take advantage of the freedom of movement from Hungary to improve his life.
“Being young and impatient, he adopted the identity of his Hungarian uncle. His intention was he would gradually be able to return to his real identity.
“But it became very difficult for him to end the deception.”