F1 mogul Bernie Ecclestone faces bribery charges in Germany
Agence France-Presse in Berlin
Formula One mogul Bernie Ecclestone faces charges in Germany relating to a bribery case, the daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported yesterday.
According to the newspaper, the charge sheet is still to be translated into English before being transmitted to Ecclestone and his lawyers.
Last autumn, Ecclestone said he was prepared to co-operate with prosecutors in Germany in order to avoid prosecution after a German court had in June sentenced the former chief risk officer for state-owned bank BayernLB to 8`1/2 years in prison for receiving tens of millions of euros in bribes from him.
The Munich regional court found Gerhard Gribkowsky guilty of taking the equivalent of US$44 million in bribes and failing to pay tax on the money.
Gribkowsky admitted receiving the money from Ecclestone in 2006 and 2007 in connection with the sale of Formula One rights to CVC, the private-equity investor which owns most of the sport.
In 2002, BayernLB had acquired the rights to Formula One.
Ecclestone, who denies wrongdoing in the case, said in testimony last year that he had paid Gribkowsky because the German had threatened to blackmail him.