Formula 1 News

Money talks, Bernie walks

Bernie Eccelstone leaves court after paying $100m settlement

As expected news has come through overnight confirming the end to the Bernie Eccelstone bribery case, thanks to an agreed settlement which will cost the F1 supremo US$100 million.

“The court did not consider a conviction overwhelmingly likely from the present point of view,” said Andrea Titz, spokesperson for the Munich court. “There was no conclusion on guilt or innocence of the defendant. He is leaving this courtroom a free man.”

The 83-year-old is free to continue in his daily role of running Formula 1, although it is unclear if he will return to the sport’s board of a directors, a position he stood down from after it was announced he would stand trial.

“It is a settlement without any conviction, the presumption of innocence is still valid,” said Eccelstone’s lawyer Sven Thomas. “That was a condition under which I negotiated.”

German law stipulates that legal proceedings can be stopped and charges withdrawn if terms can be agreed, usually by way of a fine or an agreement to do community work. Such settlements can only take place if the “gravity of guilt” would not prevent the outcome.

It is believed Eccelstone’s $100m payment is the largest of its kind in Germany. The money will go to the German treasury with $1m being set aside for a charity dealing with terminally ill children.

[Source: The Independent]

3 replies on “Money talks, Bernie walks”

As expected, did you ever think for a second of putting an 84yo billionaire behind bars?
Its prudent business milking these guys for cash.

Looks like the prosecution were not confident that the case would succeed.

It sucks, but at least the state got something with a settlement rather than nothing (and paying Bernie’s legal costs) with a not guilty verdict.

What is $100M to Eccelstone: 1x running of the Australian Grand Prix + 1x running of the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Oh well, I guess he will have to settle for only 16 track incomes this year instead of 19. That should still bank him $800M this year in fees. Of course Monaco doesn’t pay a hosting fee which is why I cut it out of the equation.

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