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Business

Court Denies Settlement Rumors in Mannesmann Trial

Following press speculation that six former Mannesmann managers on trial for their conduct during a major takeover are seeking a settlement, the judge in the case moved quickly to quash any further rumors. After Chief Judge Brigitte Koppenhöfer announced that the court would meet with the prosecution and defense after testimony from Vodafone Group Plc's former Chief Executive Officer Chris Gent, a number of German newspapers speculated the two sides were looking for an out-of-court settlement."A legal assessment is an absolutely normal procedure in such a case,'' Koppenhöfer said at the start of the 11th day of hearings at the Düsseldorf regional court. "It just serves to draw an initial conclusion.'' The trial focuses on payments totaling €57 million ($70 million) made to former Mannesmann CEO Klaus Esser and other former managers during Vodafone Group's record takeover four years ago.