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 Rene AAdler, made several crucial saves lat 
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Post Rene AAdler, made several crucial saves lat
MUNICH, Germany -- Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone rejected accusations of bribery as he went on trial Thursday in a case that could threaten his grip on the sport, telling a Munich court that he was blackmailed by a German banker who received a disputed $44 million payment. Ecclestone said at the beginning of a four-hour personal statement read out in German by his lawyers that he was "grateful" to be able to give his side of the story -- though he told judges that he would answer questions from the Munich state court through his lawyers, rather than personally. The 83-year-old Ecclestone is charged with bribery and incitement to breach of trust, and could face up to 10 years in prison if convicted. The charges involve a $44 million payment to banker Gerhard Gribkowsky, who is serving an 8 1/2-year sentence for taking the money. Ecclestone appeared in court in a dark three-piece suit and followed the proceedings closely with help from an interpreter whispering into his ear. Prosecutors allege the payment was meant to facilitate the sale of Munich-based bank Bayern LBs stake in Formula One to a buyer of Ecclestones liking. Gribkowsky was in charge of selling that 47 per cent stake in F1 in 2005. Ecclestone testified during Gribkowskys trial in 2011 and Gribkowsky is expected to be the main witness during Ecclestones trial, which is scheduled to last until Sept. 16. Gribkowsky was found guilty of corruption, tax evasion and breach of trust in a trial led by the same judge who is hearing Ecclestones case, Peter Noll. The defence made clear that it will attack Gribkowskys credibility, and Ecclestone said in his statement that the banker didnt tell the truth. In Thursdays statement, Ecclestone reiterated testimony he gave at Gribkowskys trial that he gave the banker the money because he was "blackmailed" and worried Gribkowsky would falsely accuse of him of being in charge of a trust fund set up for the Formula One bosss former wife and their children -- possibly incurring a huge British tax bill. Ecclestone said that "from todays point of view, it was not a rational decision" to pay Gribkowsky. "I saw my lifes work in danger" if Gribkowsky went to the British tax authorities, he said, adding that he wouldnt have been able to pay the resulting bill. Ecclestone said he had turned over his entire stake in Formula One to his then-wife, Slavica, and their two daughters in 1997 following a series of operations and a health scare that left him worried his wife would face a 40 per cent inheritance tax. He said he ran the day-to-day business of Formula One but hasnt owned any stake in the lucrative series since 1997. Ecclestones lawyers also insisted anew that their client is innocent, saying in a written statement that "the alleged bribe has not occurred." They argued that the indictment is based on statements by Gribkowsky that are "incorrect, misleading and incoherent" and said they would produce new documents at the trial to dispute Gribkowskys assertions. Ecclestone said he thought Gribkowsky wanted out of banking and had been interested in founding his own Formula One team. Ecclestone has stepped down temporarily as a director of F1s holding company pending the outcome of the trial, though he continues to manage the sports commercial operations on behalf of investment fund CVC Capital Partners, which has a controlling stake in the web of companies which run the commercial side of the sport. Ecclestone, who built his powerbase in F1 starting in the 1970s, likely would be unable to remain in charge if convicted -- even if he avoids a prison sentence. The trial will continue May 2. Philippe Coutinho Jersey . Price was hurt at the start of Wednesdays practice after facing just one shot as the team worked on their power play. He left the ice in discomfort and appeared to be favouring his leg. A Habs source told TSNs John Lu that Price suffered the injury in Sochi and not before the Olympics. Lionel Messi Jersey . The Flames announced Monday that Treliving, a former assistant general manager with the Coyotes, will take over the vacant GM spot in Calgary. "Im ready for this,"Treliving said. http://www.fcbarcelonapro.com/Kids-Serg ... ts-Jersey/. Matt Carkner got back into the Ottawa lineup, and made his presence felt right away by settling his clubs score in a one-sided fight with Rangers forward Brian Boyle. Cheap Barcelona Jersey . The Earthquakes (6-9-7) were coming off a 5-0 loss at home last Saturday to FC Dallas. Even with the draw, the Sounders (13-7-3) climbed back into a tie for both the Western Conference and overall top spot in MLS. Seattle, West co-leader Real Salt Lake and East leader Sporting Kansas City all have 42 points. Denis Suarez Jersey . The top-ranked Djokovic also beat Gael Monfils and then routed Roger Federer en route to his first Abu Dhabi title. "Its always great to win a title. This is the best way to start the 2012 season," Djokovic said.BERLIN -- Hamburger SV drew 1-1 at Greuther Fuerth on Sunday to avoid the clubs first ever Bundesliga relegation on away goals. Hamburg finished 16th in the Bundesliga this season and drew 0-0 in the first leg of its relegation playoff against Fuerth, which finished third in the second division. "We exhausted all our luck. We cant use any more next season," Hamburg coach Mirko Slomka said. Hamburg started brightly, striking the post through Hakan Calhanoglu before Marcell Jansens effort on the rebound was saved by Fuerth goalkeeper Wolfgang Hesl. Pierre-Michel Lasogga scored with a header from the resultant corner in the 14th minute. Fuerth equalized through Stephan Fuerstner in the 59th to ensure a frenetic finale. The home side pushed hard for the goal that would have secured promotion at Hamburgs expense, only to be thwarted by goalkeeper Jaroslav Drobny. "Hes a really great guy. He was sensational," Slomka said. Drobny, playing in place of the injured Rene AAdler, made several crucial saves late in the game to keep Hamburg, the only founding member never to have been relegated in the Bundesligas 51-year history, in the top flight for another year.dddddddddddd "We didnt play well. Full respect to our opponents. They were really strong, but were staying in the league," Drobny said. "Hamburg belongs in the Bundesliga." Hamburg faces a summer of upheaval after the clubs worst ever season. Slomkas side lost its last five league games of the season and only secured the relegation playoff place due to Nuremberg and Eintracht Braunschweigs equally poor form. "Its all the same now. Were still in and were happy," said Lasogga, who is on loan from Hertha Berlin. Fuerth had been seeking an immediate return to the Bundesliga after one season in the second division. "It hurts a lot," Fuerth coach Frank Kramer said. "Im sorry for the team. They werent rewarded. We played a great season." Cheap Nuggets Jerseys Cheap Timberwolves Jerseys Cheap Thunder Jerseys Cheap Blazers Jerseys Cheap Jazz Jerseys Cheap Warriors Jerseys Cheap Clippers Jerseys Cheap Lakers Jerseys Cheap Suns Jerseys Cheap Kings Jerseys Cheap Mavericks Jerseys Cheap Rockets Jerseys Cheap Grizzlies Jerseys Cheap Pelicans Jerseys Cheap Spurs Jerseys ' ' '


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