The increasingly violent dispute between the former Bild editor-in-chief Julian Reichelt and the Springer group is being carried out on two levels: On the one hand, the company is suing Reichelt under civil law because he is said to have violated the termination agreement. On the other hand, Springer has also filed a criminal complaint for fraud – and there is now news in this matter.
The public prosecutor’s office in Berlin begins investigations against Reichelt. This was confirmed by a spokesman for the authority. The Springer Group did not comment in detail on the reason for the ad, which was submitted at the end of April. In business circles it was said that there was evidence that Reichelt was offering internal information to other media.
Reichelt’s lawyer Ben Irle said: “The criminal complaint has not been submitted to my client to this day.” Therefore one could not comment on the still unknown allegations.
In the labor law dispute, a first hearing at the Berlin Labor Court is planned for June. In addition to the repayment of the severance payment, the amount of which is said to be more than one million euros, the publisher is also demanding the payment of a six-digit contractual penalty.
Recently, internal emails and SMS had become known in which Springer publishing boss Mathias Döpfner had made disparaging comments about East Germans. There is speculation in the industry that Reichelt could have leaked the confidential information.
Reichelt had to vacate his position as editor-in-chief of Germany’s largest tabloid in autumn 2021 and leave the group. According to his employer’s allegations, he abused his power as boss and improperly combined private and professional matters in connection with several affairs with employees. Reichelt himself later spoke of a “dirty campaign” and always rejected the allegations.
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