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Germany

Prosecutors Want New Mannesmann Trial

Federal prosecutors in Germany threw their weight on Tuesday behind the appeal against the acquittal of top-ranking corporate executives, including Deutsche Bank chief Josef Ackermann, in the so-called Mannesmann trial. Chief federal prosecutor Kay Nehm has filed an appeal against the not-guilty verdict of a court in Düsseldorf last July, the federal prosecutors said, confirming a corresponding report in the daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. At the time, Deutsche Bank chairman Josef Ackermann and five others were cleared of wrongdoing in the multi-billion-euro (dollar) takeover of German telecommunications firm Mannesmann by British mobile phone giant Vodafone in 2000. State prosecutors had already lodged an appeal with Germany's highest court, the Federal Supreme Court in Karlsruhe. In the high-profile corporate trial, Ackermann and five other top executives were found not guilty of charges of breach of fiduciary duty when they rubber-stamped multi-million-euro golden handshakes to managers at the end of the fierce Mannesmann-Vodafone takeover battle four years ago.

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