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McLaren fined $100m for spying

Kicked out of constructors' championship

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Formula One team McLaren must pay a $100m fine and has been kicked out of the constructors' championship for spying on rival team Ferrari.

The decision by the governing body of the Federation Internationale de L'Automobile (FIA) means McLaren is out of the constructors' championship this year but drivers Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso can continue to compete in the drivers' competition.

McLaren did not accept the verdict. In a statement Ron Dennis said: "Having been at the hearing today I do not accept that we deserved to be penalised in this way.

"Today’s evidence given to the FIA by our drivers, engineers and staff clearly demonstrated that we did not use any leaked information to gain a competitive advantage.”

“Much has been made in the press and at the hearing today of emails and text messages to and from our drivers. The World Motorsport Council received statements from Fernando Alonso, Lewis Hamilton and Pedro de la Rosa stating categorically that no Ferrari information had been used by McLaren and that they had not passed any confidential data to the team.”

Dennis said McLaren accepted that the Ferrari information was in the home of one of its staff but not that it had been used by the team.

The team must also prove its cars contain no Ferrari intellectual property for the 2008 season.

Dennis said the team was waiting to see the full text of the decision but was likely to appeal the decision.

McLaren's statement is here

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