Nigel Stepney risks four years in jail 

Written by David on July 14th, 2007 at 8:28 pmLast Update: July 14th, 2007 at 8:28 pm

Nigel Stepney espionage scandal house searched againNigel Stepney risks four years in jail if he is ultimately found guilty by Italian prosecutors of espionage and intentional sabotage, according to reports. In an expose on the so-called Formula One ‘spy scandal’ affair, La Gazzetta dello Sport said the 780 pages of confidential data alledgedly sent to McLaren chief designer Mike Coughlan by the sacked Ferrari engineer related not only to “intellectual property” such as specific car designs and working methods.

McLaren boss Ron Dennis insisted recently: “There is no intellectual property on our cars that belongs to another Grand Prix team — never has been and never will be.” Also in Coughlan’s possession, however, were items including detailed reports from Grand Prix races and test sessions — not necessarily data that can be simply applied to a rivals’ car but still in breach of Article 151c of the International Sporting Code. It is suggested that the McLaren team, whose drivers Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso currently lead the World Championship, minimally face race bans.

The Italian report also revealed that searches of other engineers at Ferrari’s Maranello Headquarters took place “in order to establish if Stepney had any accomplices.”

While relaying his claim of innocence, Stepney’s lawyer Sonia Bartolini was quoted in the same newspaper earlier this week, saying her client “is sure that the truth will come out and that other people will come under the eye of the examinations.”

Source f1 live

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