Adrian Sutil: The process started in Munich

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Adrian Sutil
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A mtsgericht M├╝nchen - meeting room B 177/1 - since 9.00 a.m. defends itself here Formula 1 driver Adrian Sutil against the charge of dangerous bodily harm. In the two-day process, the court has to decide whether the 29-year-old Bavarian injured the co-owner of the Lotus-Renault team, Eric Lux, intentionally, negligently or even out of self-defense with a glass on the neck.

The fateful night in the Shanghai Mint Club was more than nine months ago. After the Chinese Grand Prix (April 17th), Sutil was still on the road with his buddy Lewis Hamilton to celebrate his first win of the season. The boozy party didn't end until after midnight on the 24th floor of a skyscraper in downtown Shanghai.

Party in the Mint Club ends in the hospital

The exclusive Mint Club With its 360 degree view over the Chinese metropolis and the 17 meter long shark aquarium, it is one of the hippest locations in the city. This is where the rich and beautiful meet to celebrate together. As is well known, there is also a well-heeled upper class in socialist China who like to show what they have.

As expected, the club was well attended on the Grand Prix weekend. There was still some space for the Formula 1 celebrities in the separate VIP area. The leadership of the Lotus-Renault racing team also celebrated here. Team co-owner Eric Lux wanted to spend a nice evening with his entourage. The party came to an end in the hospital.

The district court in Munich has to find out how it got there. The whole affair is said to have been triggered by a woman from the Lux clan who was showered with a drink under unexplained circumstances. This is said to have led to the argument between Lux and Sutil, of which many people in the room did not even notice because of the loud music.

Sutil injures Lux with a champagne glass

During the fights, the Formula 1 driver injured his opponent on the neck with a champagne glass. The sharp edges of the broken glass on impact cut a long wound in the skin that later had to be stitched with 24 stitches in the hospital. The scar on the left side of the neck is still clearly visible.

Sutil admitted in a first statement that he injured his counterpart with the glass, but at the same time denied that this was done on purpose. The racing driver had himselfeven in the incident, a wound on the palm of the hand that also had to be stitched.

How Lux told the FAZ complained that he was then supposed to have been led into the elevator by the security staff . Then I took a taxi to the hospital. Photos of the sewn wound are presented to the court as evidence, as is a blood-soaked white T-shirt of the injured person. Out of anger about the incident, he initially asked the driver to pause a few races to compensate. When the latter refused, Lux filed a complaint at the end of June.

Sutil forces trial in Munich

The public prosecutor's office collected evidence for five months. In the end, a penalty order was issued against Sutil. One year probation for dangerous bodily harm, so the decision of the investigators. However, the Formula 1 driver did not want to accept this penalty. He is hoping for a milder verdict in the process. One day after his 29th birthday (January 11th), the Munich district court set the date for the two-day hearing on January 30th and 31st.

In the course of the process, the mysterious video of the incident is finally shown shown. Surveillance cameras in the Mint Club had recorded the argument. Both the prosecution and the defense assume that the pictures are for their own side. Lewis Hamilton was actually supposed to come to Munich as a witness. But the McLaren driver was excused because of an important appointment.

Probation, fine or acquittal?

How the proceedings will turn out is still completely open. In the worst case, Sutil expects the sentence to be increased. However, it is also possible to mitigate dangerous or negligent bodily harm with a fine instead of a suspended sentence. If Sutil can prove that he acted in self-defense, an acquittal is even conceivable.

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