- Oct 5th 2010 at 8:26AM
Stepney reportedly sentenced to 20 months in jail for spying on Ferrari
It's been over three years since the start of Stepneygate. But while the matter was supposedly closed a year ago, it's only now that the namesake perpetrator has been sentenced in criminal court.
The scandal, for those unfamiliar, centered around one Nigel Stepney, a British engineer who defected from Ferrari to McLaren in 2007. Stepney stood accused – and now convicted – of taking trade secrets with him from Maranello to Woking, while sabotaging Ferrari's team in the process.
The scandal resulted in McLaren being fined $100 million and then disqualified from that year's championship. Meanwhile, the FIA banned Stepney (along with his chief cohort Mike Coughlan) from any series it supervises (which is pretty much all of them) as Ferrari initiated legal proceedings against Stepney.
Those proceedings have now drawn to a close, Italian courts reportedly sentencing Stepney to 20 months in prison and – wait for it – a 600-euro fine. However, sources anticipate that due to the nature of the Italian legal system the sentence will likely be suspended and that Stepney won't actually spend a single night behind bars.