April 29, 2014

Briatore was Ecclestone's bag man.

Flav and Bernie
In a 90 page written statement presented to the German court trying him for bribery, Bernie Ecclestone revealed, among other things, that it was his friend and business partner Flavio Briatore who deposited the $44 million bribe to Gerhard Gribkowsky, the German banker at the heart of the case against him. Briatore, probably not thrilled to be brought in the middle of this, has yet to comment.

Bernie and Gribkowsky
The case against Ecclestone is laid out in a 256 page indictment and boils down to this payment, which Ecclestone characterizes as blackmail hush money but that German prosecutors maintain was a bribe to help the F1 boss win more favorable deal in the sale of the commercial side of Formula 1.

Ecclestone has commented on "circling vultures" gathering but we say rumors of his demise may have been greatly anticipated. Yes, he is mortal so at some point he'll step away but the likelihood of him being convicted or much less,
Bernie and Slavica Ecclestone
going to jail are slim to none. This is after all a man who has set up his affairs after his divorce so that it's his ex-wife who pays him alimony, to the tune of $100 million a year. How that happened is tied to how Ecclestone managed to pay no taxes on the sale of his shares of F1 and back around to the bribery/blackmail, the German banker threatening to alert UK tax authorities of Ecclestone's control of an offshore trust used in the deal.

Billionaire problems.

(via Independent, The Guardian, ItaliaRacing)

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