'Man defrauds various businesses of thousands of pounds, will go to jail', probably shouldn't be as funny as it is, but when the method of fraud is impersonating Gael Kakuta and it's being done by a fellow former footballer ... yeah, it's difficult not to be amused. We touched on the story a few weeks ago, but in case you missed the details, let's refresh.
The impersonator: Medi Abalimba, a 24-year-old former Liverpool reservist for whom Derby once paid £1.2 million. Washing out of high level football in 2012, he eventually signed for Farnborough Town, supplementing his relatively meagre income with a taxi dispatching job.
The impersonated: Gael Kakuta, a 23-year-old attacking midfielder, currently at loan from Chelsea at Rayo Vallecano. Best known for nearly causing the Blues to be banned for two transfer windows after a controversial move from Lens, Kakuta hasn't really lived up to his enormous potential, although he's currently doing very well in La Liga.
The goods: £25,000 worth of Cristal; £9,600+ in luxury hotels, £11,000 on limousines, and attempted £20,000 worth of clothes.
Basically, Abalimba spend obscene amounts of money without actually having any, then managed to convince the people who owed that he would pay later on the strength of being Gael Kakuta, who gets paid rather a lot more than Abalimba's current £300 per week wages. He is not, in fact, Gael Kakuta.
The case is made all the stranger by the fact that Abalimba had already been found guilty of impersonating the Chelsea man -- he was handed a suspended six-month sentence back in February 2013 -- and it's difficult to believe that he didn't realise he'd be caught again. And, if you want to double down on strangeness, try this line from the Mirror on for size:
He had also booked into the five-star Mandarin Oriental hotel in Hyde Park, after pretending to be Kakuta's agent but was subsequently caught by police after they found his fingerprints on a pair of Harvey Nichols shoes the fraudster had attempted to give out as a tip.
Too bold, Medi. Far too bold.