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Reports: Ecclestone could pay to settle corruption case

Jul 29, 2014, 10:05 AM EDT

File photo of F1 chief Ecclestone testifying at district court in Munich Reuters

This Tuesday, Bernie Ecclestone’s in the news for more than just his call for the FIA to scrap standing restarts for 2015.

Media reports out Tuesday including the Deutsche Press-Agentur in Germany, The Times in the UK and Bloomberg, among others, have said the FOM supremo seeks to pay 25 million Euros ($33.6m U.S.) to Bayerische Landesbank in order to settle the corruption case outstanding against him.

Per the Bloomberg report, Ecclestone’s lawyers said the case had become “extremely burdensome” and sought to end the case against Ecclestone. A court spokesperson said via email to Bloomberg that the details would still need to get sorted.

Ecclestone’s in a bit of a no-win situation here as it regards to the corruption case, which has been in the news off-and-on for well over a year.

There’s nothing good from a PR standpoint about saying “we paid our way out” of this case – although Ecclestone probably doesn’t need the distraction anymore as he’d rather tend to the day-to-day job of continuing to run of F1.

Yet the longer the case lingers, the worse his chances are of retaining control of the sport because a decision could come down the pike and could leave Ecclestone set up for jail time as a result of the bribery offered to banker Gerhard Gribkowsky.

Gribkowsky did take the bribe and is now in the middle of serving an eight and a half year sentence.

The most recent story in this case came a couple weeks ago, when Ecclestone offered details of the payment.

  1. kitnamania13 - Jul 29, 2014 at 1:53 PM

    Makes sense. The best way to resolve a bribery case is with another bribe.

  2. barrylibby - Jul 29, 2014 at 6:37 PM

    In protest to standing starts Bernie should stand in front of the first one !

  3. techmeister1 - Jul 29, 2014 at 8:41 PM

    Criminals with money should still do prison time for their crimes. It’s unthinkable to allow a criminal to buy their way out of prison. It makes a mockery of the judicial system. It’s outrageous for Bernie’s paid liars to claim the charges are a “burden” as if he can’t be bothered with accountability for his crimes. That statement by his attorneys should add another 5 years to his prison sentence, IMO.

  4. worknman24hours - Aug 2, 2014 at 2:55 PM

    This is a calculated way for all parties to cease the legal case.

    The case should have never been brought in the first place.

    The key witness was already convicted of the charge they are bringing against Ecclestone.

    And the lack of cohesive convicting evidence has placed the prosecution in an unfortunate position where they cannot get off the case without some form of restitution to the corporation that was supposedly done wrong.

    For those who do not know,lawyers are often the only parties of any legal case that get out fat and happy and this case simply makes both parties lawyers richer and richer with no real headdway in either way to a conviction or any conclusion to this case.

    This payment is not a bribe.

    This is a legally calculated way to stop the nonsense.

    The party offered the money should take it and this baseless case should be immediately dropped.

  5. barrylibby - Aug 4, 2014 at 5:41 PM

    “I’ll pay you X not to talk to my tax people” !
    Nope that doesn’t sound like a bribe to me.
    Wait it sounds just like a bribe .
    We’l now we will see a payment that isn’t a bribe but is a bribe to settle the case !

    Quacks like a duck,Walks like a duck. it is a “bribe”,ya right!

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