Footballer on trial after 'faking own death for $1 million payout'

·Sports Editor
·2-min read
Hiannick Kamba, pictured here posing for a photo during his time at Schalke.
Hiannick Kamba poses for a photo during his time at Schalke. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Bongarts/Getty Images)

Former football star Hiannick Kamba has gone on trial for fraud in Germany, accused of faking his own death in order to score a $1 million insurance payout.

The former Schalke player was found alive and well last year, four years after being pronounced dead in a car accident.

The Congolese defender, 34, was declared dead in January of 2016 following an apparent crash in his home country.

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At the time, his club VfB Huls reported that the former Schalke youth player had tragically passed away in the accident, but Kamba was tracked down in Gelsenkirchen last year.

Kamba and wife Christina are now facing court in Germany accused of faking his death for insurance purposes.

Essen court spokesman Thomas Kliegel told local media that the Kambas had taken out a life insurance policy for Hiannick.

Christina allegedly cashed in the policy for $1 million after producing documentary proof of her husband's death.

"The defendant turned up at the German Embassy in Kinshasa two years later, claiming he had been kidnapped," Kliegel added.

Hiannick Kamba, pictured here alive and well, four years after being pronounced dead.
Hiannick Kamba was found alive and well, four years after being pronounced dead. Image: Twitter

Kamba's wife denies role in alleged insurance scam

Christina's lawyer Michael Wolff refuted claims she was involved in a scam, saying she was shocked to learn that her husband was still alive.

"We are convinced that by the end of the trial both the prosecutors and the court will be convinced of my client's innocence," Wolff said.

"The money is still available, and it has since been seized. It has been invested in a house and put into accounts."

Christina told Bild: "I have nothing to do with any deception. The news of Hiannick's death shocked me as much as anyone else."

Kamba is said to be facing up to 10 years in prison if he is found guilty.

He is back at his old job now that he has resettled in Germany, working as a chemical technician for an energy supply company.

Kamba and his parents fled the Congo in 1986, but his family was deported back to the African country in 2005.

However, Kamba was allowed to stay in Germany thanks to his youth team status at Schalke, as he was granted asylum and residency rights.

It was at Schalke that he played alongside Bayern star Manuel Neuer, who was a member of the club from 1991-2001.

Kamba spent his entire senior career playing for a variety of clubs across Germany's lower leagues.

with agencies

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