September 20, 2013 / 10:27 AM / 4 years ago

German court delays decision on Ecclestone bribery case

FRANKFURT, Sept 20 (Reuters) - A Munich court said it expected a decision on whether Formula One Chief Executive Bernie Ecclestone will have to stand trial after being charged with bribery to be delayed until next year.

Ecclestone’s lawyers have said they plan to submit further extensive statements related to the case, and an imminent staffing change at the court will further delay the matter, the court said in a statement on Friday.

Ecclestone’s lawyer in Germany was not immediately available for comment.

Ecclestone, 82, was charged in July with bribing a German banker to smooth the sale of a stake in the motor racing business to private equity firm CVC eight years ago.

At the time, the court had said a decision on whether to proceed with a trial was not expected before mid-September.

Ecclestone, 82, has denied wrongdoing and said he will fight to clear his name. The case could mean a further delay to tentative plans to float Formula One on the stock market in Singapore and will revive speculation about an eventual successor to the man who turned the sport into a major global business.

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