The Italian police have returned Flavio Briatore’s yacht ‘Blue Force’ to the disgraced former Renault F1 boss, after it was seized last month on the suspicion of tax fraud.
But Spain’s Diario Sport is reporting that Briatore has been allowed to have the yacht returned to him, upon payment of a €5 million surety and with the assurances that the boat won’t leave Mediterranean waters.
The Italian has denied all wrongdoing, but should Flav be found guilty of tax evasion by the Italian courts, he could face a fine of up to €40M or six years’ jail, according to The Sunday Times.
Briatore – who was expelled from F1 for his alleged involvement in the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix ‘Crashgate’ affair – has accused the Italian police of creating “a big television production” to discredit him.
“That boat was a commercial boat with a €50M turnover in the past four years, but the police seem to think that was all for me,” he told the Telegraph.
“Of course, I use the yacht, because if you are going to own a business, it may as well be one you can enjoy – otherwise, I would have bought a funeral home,” he added.
[Original image via AUTOSPORT]