Bernie paid team bosses to sign

Friday 08-November-2013 06:09

Bernie Ecclestone has in the past paid team bosses personally in order to get them to sign Concorde Agreements, it emerged in his High Court case.

Ecclestone is in court this week after being sued by former F1 shareholder Constantin Medien, who alleges that he undervalued the sport when BayernLB bank sold their share to CVC.

The 83-year-old stands accused of entering a "corrupt bargain" with former German banker Gerhard Gribkowsky, who is currently serving an eight-and-a-half year sentence for accepting a bribe to the tune of $44 million from Ecclestone.

However, according to Philip Marshall QC, representing Constantin, Ecclestone is not against paying bribes to smooth the way.

The Telegraph reports that on Thursday, Marshall stated that former team bosses Eddie Jordan, Alain Prost and Tom Walkinshaw had 'all received bankers' drafts from Valper Holdings, a subsidiary of Bambino Holdings, Ecclestone's family trust' to the sum of $10 million. The trio were paid in order to get them to sign the 1998 Concorde Agreement.

"They were paid to ensure that their teams did sign. Isn't that right?" Marshall asked to which Ecclestone answered "yes."

Pressed as to why the money was not paid to the teams, Ecclestone said he did "not the slightest idea.

"I've no idea. They were paid to sign the Concorde Agreement and that's what they did.

"What you're inferring is these people haven't been acting correctly, Alain Prost and whatever."

According to the The Guardian, the F1 supremo was then asked: "Did you regard the payment of a bribe to someone who is not a public official as something that is acceptable?"

Ecclestone answered: "I'll have to think about that. I wish I'd thought about it before actually."

The case continues on Friday.

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