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Bernie sniffs at $400m bank claim

2012-10-26 06:55

BERNIE ECCLESTONE: German bank wants him to pay back $400-million.

Christian Kraemer and Alan Baldwin

GREATER NOIDA, India - German Landesbank BayernLB is seeking $400-million in damages from Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone, who said he would fight in court if need be.

BayernLB said on Thursday it had approached Ecclestone's lawyers about damages over a deal in 2005 to sell its stake in F1.
Information from the trial earlier in 2012 of BayernLB's former chief risk officer Gerhard Gribkowsky has subsequently led the Munich-based lender to conclude it had sold its F1 stake on the cheap, a financial source said on Thursday.


Speaking at the hospitality suite at the F1 Grand Prix in India, Ecclestone said, "They asked our lawyers in Germany. They said could we have $400-million back? I did not respond. There is no point, is there?"

Ecclestone said he had not offered to settle. Asked whether he was prepared to go to court, he said: "Yeah, absolutely."

Gribkowsky, who admitted to taking bribes during the stake sale, was sentenced to eight and a half years in prison by a Munich court in June, 2012.

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