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Ecclestone to learn fate in bribe case

May 14, 2013, 2:11 PM EDT

SKI-WORLD-AUT-MEN-DOWNHILL Getty Images

Bernie Ecclestone is set to find out whether he will face charges over allegedly paying a bribe to a German banker.

Prosecutors in Germany say they have completed their investigations into Ecclestone’s dealings with former BayernLB banker Gerhard Gribkowsky and will reveal their findings soon.

Ecclestone is alleged to have paid $44m to Gribkowsky in connection with the sale of F1 to current owners CVC Capital Partners in 2006.

Ecclestone claims the money was paid to keep Gribkowsky from making false allegations about Ecclestone’s family trust which could lead to an investigation by the British tax authorities.

Five days ago Gribkowsky abandoned his plans to appeal the eight-and-a-half year jail term he was sentenced to last June for his part in the deal.

Gribkowsky was originally arrested in January 2011 and was put on trial the following October. When he was found guilty the judge ruled Ecclestone had been the “driving force” behind the payments.

Ecclestone said in December it is possible he would have to resign his position as F1 boss if he were to face charges.

The Formula One boss is fighting a related case with Bluewater Communication Holdings who claim Ecclestone cost them $650 million due to the Gribkowsky deal.

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