F1: Reports of legal action in Monza paddock

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarSaturday, September 8th, 2007

 
 

Italian law officials are reported to be planning a visit to McLaren team headquarters at Monza with the intention of instigating a criminal prosecution for sporting fraud, industrial espionage and embezzlement.

The story has been picked up by the Italian media and F1 outlets. However Ron Dennis has stated that no formal notice of any kind has yet been served on him.

He is said to have told reporters on the spot: “If it happens, it happens, but nothing’s happened yet.”

Notifications of pending legal action are said to have been issued by the Modena prosecutor and to name at least five members of McLaren staff including Dennis and team CEO Martin Whitmarsh.

Italian police would apparently now have to investigate the claims and decide whether the McLaren personnel have a case to answer.

In other news, Dennis has been asked the inevitable questions over whether the increasingly deep water his team finds itself in is going to prompt his retirement.

He’s answered firmly in the negative and repeated once again that the team intends to make its point on the racetrack this weekend.

He said: “I think there’s a few people around who would like me to go. If I thought it was the right thing then I wouldn’t hesitate but I don’t think it is the right thing to do.

“This is certainly the most extreme situation I’ve been through. I think that’s apparent to everybody. My job isn’t as I would like it to be at the moment.

“Of course, I am challenged by all this, but it’s my job, and I’m doing the best job I can in difficult circumstances.”

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