• Germany's news in English

Ballack: I'm too poor to pay speeding fine

The Local · 1 Nov 2012, 10:14

Published: 01 Nov 2012 10:14 GMT+01:00

The 36-year-old football legend was caught by a speed trap driving at 211 kph on a Spanish motorway near Santa Cruz de la Sierra, where the speed limit is 120 kph, two Spanish policemen testified.

Spanish newspaper El Mundo reported that he was driving an Audi Q7 worth €52,000.

State prosecutors demanded he pay a fine of €10,000 – and lose his driving licence for two and a half years.

Appearing in court for Ballack on Wednesday, his lawyer argued that the former Chelsea and Bayern Munich footballer should only have to pay €1,080, on the grounds that he is unemployed at the moment, and that his licence should only be suspended for a year.

The figure was calculated based on the minimum daily income rate by which fines are imposed - €6 - multiplied by 180.

The lawyer argued that Ballack currently had no income. "Just because you are a famous football player does not mean you have assets," the lawyer said, the Spanish newspaper reported.

Ballack was earning around €150,000 a week during his heyday at Chelsea in 2006, and had an income of €100,000 a week at the same club as recently as 2010.

The former Chelsea star, who turned 36 in September, retired from professional football at the start of October after his two-year contract at Bayer Leverkusen expired having made 98 appearances for Germany. He and his partner of 13 years Simone Ballack also filed for divorce last week.

Story continues below…

DPA/The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

11:07 November 1, 2012 by steve_glienicke
The excuses they will come out with, this guy is a millionaire from his career in football, and could more than meet the fine, but lets just say he cannot, so sell the 52,000 euro car (he won't need it with a 3 year ban) and pay off the fine.....

god these people make me sick with the excuses they come up with!
11:12 November 1, 2012 by coldjava
Obviously the guy is stingy lol
14:27 November 1, 2012 by reallybigdog
Hmm a $25 million net worth and no income or interest income? Must keep all his assets in a trust to show the courts that he has no income/assets.

Anything not to pay the government is more like it!

Sell your cars and buy yourself a limo complete with chauffeur until you get your license back...poor fella!!
15:08 November 1, 2012 by BobbyBaxter
Technically his lawyer is correct. If at the time of the offence he was unemployed, and the law states that you pay on the basis of your monthly income, then he should not have to pay much at all.

We cannot change the law just to suit our beliefs, irrespective of what a skinflint this chap obvoulsy is....

Also, a good lawyer helps.
15:16 November 1, 2012 by steve_glienicke
Hey BobbyBaxter, while technically your correct, this typically applies to poor people without work, however this man is more than well known, the courts have the right to repossess articles to cover the costs of the fine, so in theory if they want their money they can take his car to pay for it....no escape clause here for Poor Mr Ballack
15:45 November 1, 2012 by reallybigdog

What assets are you referring too? Did he fly and then rent the audi or did he drive the 1600kms? His assets appear to all be in a hold-co/trust for protection purposes so what are they taking from him?
16:00 November 1, 2012 by Englishted
Unemployed but with 70% of his former wages?
19:10 November 1, 2012 by raandy
Your not in Kansas anymore Todo.
20:07 November 1, 2012 by bwjijsdtd
Rich enough to drive like a "bat out of hell" but too poor to pay the fine ... Suck it up Michael ... hock everything you own and sell your soul for what you can get for it. The next time you have the urge to speed, please aim for that big oak tree will you?
22:16 November 1, 2012 by ovalle3.14
If you are not employed and have no assets, why break the speed limit?
04:05 November 2, 2012 by temanaroa
unemployed and Audi Q7?...then get an old Seat 600!
15:18 November 2, 2012 by stablemate77
ballack is one of the greatest german footballers......the lawyer was not really his....if you read.....ther is no limit of speed in germany....salute to michael ballack and the great foot team of germany...
08:58 November 4, 2012 by sonriete
To me the question is what is fair about a €10,000 speeding ticket and 2. 1/2 year license suspension?

He was just speeding for goodness sakes, not robbing a bank.

They want rich Germans to come to their country and support their dead economy and they treat them like this ?!!

Maybe Ballack should discover the pleasures of Miami, where everyone pays the same fine for the same driving infraction.

And for that matter accident rates are no higher in Florida than in Spain, so where is the deterrent in this money grab?
Today's headlines
Bishop buys €300k altar as refugee home rots
Bishop Konrad Zdarsa of Augsburg. Photo: DPA

Bishop buys €300k altar as refugee home rots

2 hours ago

The Bishop of Augsburg has announced plans to build a €300,000 altar in the city cathedral, just days after complaining that the city was underfunding refugees.

Five foolproof steps to do Advent like a German
The lighting of the first "Adventskranz" candle marks the start of the festive season. Photo: DPA

Five foolproof steps to do Advent like a German

3 hours ago

With the first Sunday of Advent almost upon us, The Local looks at how Germany celebrates the festive season - and what to look out for once Advent begins on November 29th.

Climate chaos threatens Germany, experts warn
Flooding in Bavaria in 2013. Photo: DPA

Climate chaos threatens Germany, experts warn

4 hours ago

Ever-more heat waves and floods will hit Germany over the coming century, posing serious challenges to the country’s agriculture and economy, a new analysis predicts.

Growth boosted by shopping and refugees
File photo: DPA

Growth boosted by shopping and refugees

8 hours ago

The German economy posted firm growth for the third quarter, boosted by consumer spending which is fast becoming a cornerstone for German economic expansion, data published Tuesday showed.

November set to break refugee arrivals record
Refugees at the German-Austrian border. Photo: DPA

November set to break refugee arrivals record

9 hours ago

November is set to break the record set in October for the highest number of refugees to arrive in Germany in one month, police reported on Monday.

Pegida marchers attack news cameraman

Pegida marchers attack news cameraman

10 hours ago

Police arrested two people in Dresden on Monday evening after a cameraman was attacked by anti-Islam demonstrators on the fringes of a much smaller gathering than recent weeks.

Volkswagen scandal
VW 'can fix 90 percent of cheating cars' in EU
File photo: DPA

VW 'can fix 90 percent of cheating cars' in EU

11 hours ago

German auto giant Volkswagen, mired in a massive emissions cheating scandal, said Monday that it has found technical solutions for more than 90 percent of the vehicles affected in Europe.

Lufthansa faces new strikes starting Thursday
Photo: DPA

Lufthansa faces new strikes starting Thursday

1 day ago

The troubled airline Lufthansa is facing a new round of strikes, after air crew union UFO told its members to head for the pickets on Thursday and Friday.

Germans 'waste valuable clothes': Greenpeace
Clothes donations at a refugee centre. Photo: DPA

Germans 'waste valuable clothes': Greenpeace

1 day ago

When it comes to what they wear, Germans have a throwaway culture. A new survey by Greenpeace shows that the words Schuster (cobbler) and Schneider (tailor) have become little more than surnames in modern society.

Funeral of Helmut Schmidt
Hamburg bids farewell to its most famous son
Pallbearers carry Helmut Schmidt's coffin away from the altar following the funeral service. Photo: DPA

Hamburg bids farewell to its most famous son

1 day ago

Thousands of people lined the streets of Hamburg on Monday to pay their respects to former Chancellor Helmut Schmidt, as the great and the good of Germany, Europe and the world gathered in church to bid him farewell.

Sponsored Article
How to figure out healthcare abroad
German ISS astronaut tells kids to follow their dreams
Sponsored Article
Why family companies need free trade and TTIP
90 percent of Germans want tougher security
Sponsored Article
'Innovative companies like Hövding benefit most from TTIP'
Are you living in Germany's most expensive city?
Sponsored Article
The cheapest and fastest way to transfer money
Should singer accused of homophobia represent Germany at Eurovision?
70 years since the Nuremberg Trials
The German connection in the Paris attacks
Snow expected on 'first weekend of winter'
10 years of Angela Merkel in Berlin
Could soldiers soon be patrolling German streets?
Second German Paris victim was teacher and journalist
'We can't beat Isis with military means'
How will Germany help France fight Isis?
One German confirmed dead in Paris attacks
'Don't take Paris out on refugees': German defence minister
Germany's minute of silence for Paris victims
Nightclub bans refugees for harassing women
OPINION: Refugees must learn to respect German values
The ancient German community at the heart of Texas
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd