F1 Academy managing director Susie Wolff files criminal complaint against FIA

Susie Wolff, the Managing Director of the F1 Academy, confirmed on social media Wednesday that in early March she filed a criminal complaint against the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), Formula 1’s governing body. The criminal complaint comes in the wake of the FIA announcing back in December it was investigating allegations of a potential conflict of interest involving Wolff and her husband Toto Wolff, the Team Principal of Mercedes.

That investigation came after a media report suggested that confidential information had been shared between the two, and that other teams had raised the issue with F1. Those allegations brought fierce denials from the Wolffs, and all ten F1 teams shared statements of support backing the F1 Academy director, and denying any involvement.

The matter was quickly closed when the FIA issued a statement days later indicating that the compliance safeguards were working, and “that there is no ongoing investigation in terms of ethical or disciplinary inquiries involving any individual.”

However, the matter is far from settled, given this recent development. While SB Nation has not viewed the criminal complaint — the French legal system largely restricts access to court filings to parties and counsel — Wolff did confirm the filing on social media:

Wolff strongly pushed back against the allegations back in December, posting in part on social media: “I am deeply insulted but sadly unsurprised by the public allegations that have been made this evening,” posted Wolff when the reports first surfaced. “In the strongest possible terms, I reject these allegations.”

Then when the FIA dismissed the allegations, Wolff called for transparency on social media.

“I might have been collateral damage in an unsuccessful attack on somebody else, or the target of a failed attempt to discredit me personally, but I have worked too hard to have my reputation called into question by an unfounded press release,” wrote Wolff on Instagram.

“However, this episode has so far taken place without transparency or accountability. I have received online abuse about my work and my family. I will not allow myself to be intimidated and intend to follow up until I have found out who has instigated this campaign and misled the media.

“What happened this week is simply not good enough. As a sport, we must demand, and we deserve, better.”

It seems the next steps in Wolff’s quest to get to the bottom of this incident will come in the halls of a French courthouse.

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