Now dubbed the “Lying Dutchman” by the German press Robin van Helsum could face a bill of at least for his nine-month stay at the hands of Berlin’s social services. During his time in Germany he got free bed and board, clothing, German lessons and £200 a month in pocket money.
“We will file a suit for fraudulent appropriation of youth benefits during the course of the week,” Ed Koch, spokesman for the district youth welfare office, said. “We’re going to demand this money back. Whether we ever see it again, we don’t know.”
Mr Van Helsum, 20, had lived at Berlin’s expense while he maintained the fiction that he was a 17-year-old called Ray who had spent years living in the forests. His cover was only blown when old classmates in his hometown of Hengelo recognised his picture on the news. It emerged later that he had travelled to Berlin just days before he re-cast himself as Ray.
Social services also complained since his real identity became known he has failed to apologise or even say thank you.
The link is here (offers nothing extra) and for the pointer I thank Suzy Khimm.