F1: Ecclestone Indicted on Bribery Charges
One of the most shocking news in the recent times that pertains to Formula One racing is that Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula One boss has been formally accused of bribery by the German court. He has a trial in Munich and if the charges are found to be correct then the eighty two year old motor racing magnate would have to be dethroned after his forty year reign and he would have to spend up to five years in prison. The reason why this accusation was indicted on Ecclestone is because of the USD 44 million payment that was made to a certain banker in Germany called Gerhard Gribkowsky. It is believed that this was the payment made for the sale of the Formula One rights in the year 2006.
The lawyers working for Ecclestone has already received an English copy of the charges. The date for the upcoming trial in Munich, however, has not been decided yet but it is believed that the trial won’t take place until September. Therefore, if the defense team of Ecclestone is interested in challenging the charges then they have time until mid-August to do so. Ecclestone was quoted saying that he is planning to defend himself. He is taking things into his stride by describing the accusations as ‘interesting’, although he did mention that it is a pity that such accusations had taken place.
If Ecclestone is found guilty and given a jail term then this would spell doom for his Formula One empire. Ecclestone is very much aware of the consequences that he would have to face in case he loses the case. He was quoted defending himself and stating that he was not guilty and that he made the payment to Gribkowsky only because the latter was blackmailing him. Ecclestone also added that in case he is sent to jail then he will have to ‘deal with it’ even though he wouldn’t like being in jail.
Ecclestone is a very professional individual in the sense that he has always been very passionate and enthusiastic about Formula One racing and currently he is taking Formula One to new countries. One person that has been deeply affected by the accusations is Christian Horner, the team principal of Red Bull, belonging to World Champion Sebastian Vettel. Horner stated that Ecclestone is the pillar of Formula One racing and that the Formula One racing has managed to become what it is today because of the efforts of Ecclestone. Therefore the people in Formula One racing can only keep their fingers crossed and hope for the best!
Editorial staff RTR Sports Pictures from the web