A 30-year-old man has been detained by the Canadian authorities for claiming a wrong age of 17 in order to play high school basketball.
The man, identified as Jonathan Nicola according to an Immigration and Refugee Board hearing transcript obtained by AFP on Thursday was reported to have received a full athletic scholarship under the false age to play basketball at a Catholic school in Windsor, Ontario.
Investigations revealed that he arrived in Toronto in November, 2015 on a two-year student permit and lived at his coach’s home while attending a grade 11 class.
According to a government lawyer at the recent Immigration and Refugee Board hearing, “It is believed that he has misrepresented his age by 12 years,”
Nicola’s details in his passport and other documents however listed his last birthday as 1998.
In self defence, Nicola told the court he did not know his actual age adding that he asked his mother repeatedly but she couldn’t remember.
He said: “I really do not know what is my real age, I cannot tell you what is my real age,” he testified.