Michael Schumacher's health is at the centre of a privacy court case
Michael Schumacher, a seven-time F1 champion, suffered catastrophic head injuries in a skiing accident in late 2013.
His family and team have tried hard to maintain the sports legend’s privacy during his recovery and the secrecy continued this week as a judge kicked the public out of a trial citing details of the former F1 driver’s health.
The Schumacher family have taken German magazine Bunte to court after the publication claimed the 47-year-old could walk again.
But this was denied in October by Mr Schumacher's lawyer Felix Damm, with the magazine accused of invading the former F1 driver’s privacy.
The world champion is unable to stand without the support of therapists, according to the family lawyer.
Mr Schumacher’s agent Sabine Kehm also condemned the article saying: “Unfortunately we are forced by a recent press report to clarify that the assertion that Michael could move again is not true.
“Such speculation is irresponsible, because given the seriousness of his injuries, his privacy is very important. Unfortunately they also give false hopes to many involved people.”
Michael Schumacher suffered head injuries in a skiing accident in 2013
The public is excluded from the trial. It is about the health condition of the patient
Judge Simone Käfer
During a hearing in Hamburg this week, the public were excluded from listening to deputy chief editor of Bunte Tanja May.
Judge Simone Käfer said: "The public is excluded from the trial. It is about the health condition of the patient.”
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According to German media, a court spokesman said the only question during Miss May’s evidence focused on whether the deputy editor had complied with journalistic due diligence.
The Schumacher family have sought to maintain the F1 legend's privacy since the accident
Mr Schumacher is being cared for at his palatial home in Geneva
The Schumachers are suing the magazine for up to £85,000 for invasion of privacy.
The verdict is expected this month.
Mr Schumacher, a keen skier, was injured when he hit his head on the right side of a rock while skiing in Meribel, France in late 2013.
Doctors removed blood clots from his brain and he was placed in a drug-induced coma.
Michael Schumacher F1 Legend Thu, July 30, 2009 Play slideshow 1 of 12
He later came out of the coma and was transferred from hospital to his palatial home in Geneva.
Mr Schumacher remains at home where he receives 24-hour round-the -clock care from a team of specialists.
The case comes after his former manager hit out at the Schumacher family for the media blackout surround the father-of-two’s health.
Willi Weber, who helped guide Schumacher to seven F1 titles during a 20-year partnership, said he was no longer on contact with his protege.
He said: “The Schumacher family seems to be afraid of me. I sent the family flowers and cards for his birthday but I got no answer. That makes me sad.
“There seems to be the fear that I would disclose something about Michael's condition but I would never do that. I would even sign a non-disclosure agreement.”
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