F1 News, Views and Reviews

Spy-Gate Saga Finally Ends In Italian Courtroom

The Spy-Gate saga which rocked F1 throughout the 2007 season where it was discovered that McLaren Mercedes designers and staff had conspired to steal information from rivals Ferrari has finally ended in a court room in Italy.

Mike Coughlan, Nigel Stepney and many others were involved in the case which recieved front page headlines around the world and damaged the image of some of the best designers in F1.  Stepney had been in the Ferrari family and suffered a lot from Italian’s who saw him as a traitor.  It was Coughlan’s fault that the world found out when he sent his wife to a photocopying shop with thousands of pages of material marked “Confidential, Ferrari”.

The court had a ‘nolo-condere’ (no contest) between the lawyers, and a judge ordered fines to be handed out.  Mike Coughlan must pay 180,000Euros, whereas others must pay 150,000Euros.

A McLaren spokesman said: “The proceedings in Italy were merely the officialising of what had been proposed long before, namely the ‘nolo contendere’ agreement. A line has finally been drawn under this matter.”


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