Ecclestone hurt in 200k London mugging

Fri, 26 Nov 11:05:00 2010

Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone suffered a head injury when he was mugged in central London, police sources said on Friday.

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The incident occurred just weeks after Ecclestone had suggested that the capital's streets were more violent than those of Brazil.

The 80-year-old billionaire was kicked and punched by his attackers before they escaped with about 200,000 worth of jewellery, media reports said.

Four men were waiting for him and his Brazilian girlfriend as they arrived at the headquarters of his business, Formula One Holdings, in Knightsbridge, central London, on Wednesday evening.

The offices are near Buckingham Palace and within walking distance of Oxford Street, one of the capital's busiest shopping thoroughfares.

Earlier this month, Ecclestone had said it was surprising the number of people who got mugged hourly in Oxford Street.

He was responding to the attempted carjacking of Britain's former Formula 1 champion Jenson Button whose trained undercover police driver had to swerve his way out of a traffic jam after gunmen approached their stationary armoured car ahead of the Sao Paulo race.

Questions have been raised about the continued staging of F1 in Brazil, which has a bad record for serious crime.

"They look for victims, they look for anyone that looks like a soft touch and not too bright," Ecclestone had said of the Brazil incident.

"The people that look a bit soft and simple, they will always have a go at."

Scotland Yard said Ecclestone was taken to a west London hospital for treatment and was later discharged.

"There were no reports of any other injuries," they said in a statement.

"The items stolen are believed to be a quantity of jewellery."

Reuters

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