Sports

Man jailed four years for pretending to be Chelsea footballer

Here is a man who took the phrase "fake it till you make it" to heart.

Sadly, not only did he not make it, he was also sentenced to jail for his efforts.

Mehdi Abalimba, 25, admitted to multiple counts of fraud and was sentenced to four years in jail for posing as Chelsea footballer Gael Kakuta.

The one-time promising footballer - Abalimba joined Derby County in 2009 for over £1 million (S$2 million) - masqueraded as Kakuta and went on shopping sprees in department store Selfridges.

He partied at a nightclub in Manchester and even hired a helicopter for a joyride, BBC reported.

Stole credit card details

The court was told he stole credit card details by photographing credit cards at a North London gym which he had broken into using a master key.

In July, this year, he ordered £20,000 worth of clothes from Selfridges in Manchester and to allay suspicions, displayed some of his football skills to the public.

According to Sgt Adam Cronshaw from the Greater Manchester Police, Abalimba was able to con people by being "charming and charismatic".

Tapping on his previous footballing experience helped further the con. Of course, bearing some resemblance to the real Gael Kakuta also came in useful.

Oh, in case you're wondering - Gael Kakuta is currently on loan to Spanish club Rayo Vallecano for the 2014-2015 season.

Sources: BBC, Xinhua. 

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