Thursday 30 October 2014

Ecclestone bribed me, claims banker

Published 13/05/2014 | 14:12

Bernie Ecclestone says he was blackmailed into making a multimillion-pound payment to a German banker

A banker has told a German court that he accepted a multimillion-pound bribe from Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone to facilitate a business deal.

Gerhard Gribkowsky, the prosecution's star witness in Ecclestone's corruption trial, said Ecclestone initially approached him suggesting the deal be made in Singapore.

Gribkowsky said he "understood Ecclestone knew a lot of people there, among them the head of police".

The banker, who has been convicted of taking the money, says in the end he was paid 44 million US dollars (£26 million), allegedly to facilitate the sale of Munich-based bank Bayern LB's 47% stake in F1 to a buyer of Ecclestone's liking.

Ecclestone says he was blackmailed into making the payment, but Gribkowsky told the court in Munich he was no "evil extortionist".

Press Association

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