MUNICH, March 17 State prosecutors in Munich
will not appeal a court ruling to send former Bayern Munich
president Uli Hoeness to jail for 3-1/2 years on a tax evasion
conviction even though it was two years less than their demand,
their office said on Monday.
Hoeness, 62, also opted on Friday not to appeal the ruling
after the most spectacular tax evasion trial in the country's
history. Hoeness resigned as Bayern's president and chairman of
the supervisory board after the conviction.
Hoeness, who turned the soccer club into one of the
world's most successful sporting dynasties during 35 years at
the helm, is expected to begin his term within the next two
months - most likely at the same Landsberg prison west of Munich
where Adolf Hitler went to jail in 1924 on a treason conviction.
Hoeness was convicted of tax evasion on Thursday for evading
28.5 million euros in taxes on income earned in a secret Swiss
bank account. He had hoped his voluntary disclosure of the
income earned would lead to leniency and a suspended sentence.
Hoeness, who also owns a Bavarian sausage factory, helped
West Germany win the 1974 World Cup as a player. As an executive
at Bayern Munich, he helped build the team into a perennial
powerhouse that won last year's Champions League and
dominates the German Bundesliga.
The club's earnings have soared under his stewardship, which
has lasted 35 years in various posts. With more than 220,000
members, it is one of the world's biggest soccer clubs.
His tax evasion shocked the nation and prompted thousands of
tax dodgers to turn themselves in. The maximum sentence for tax
evasion is 10 years and the prosecutors, citing Hoeness's
cooperation, had sought a 5-1/2 year sentence.
(Writing by Erik Kirschbaum; Editing by Angus MacSwan)