The 91-year-old entered a not guilty plea to a charge of fraud by false representation when he appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in London on Monday. 

The charge was authorised against Ecclestone in July following a “complex and worldwide criminal investigation” relating to a period between July 2013 and October 2016.

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During the short hearing, Ecclestone was granted unconditional bail ahead of his next appearance at Southwark Crown Court on September 19. 

Prosecutor Robert Simpson told the court: "During the course of that investigation he was asked about any trusts placed abroad that he was involved with.

"The Crown has based this charge on the basis he failed to declare a trust in Singapore with a bank account containing approximately $650m.”

Ecclestone ran F1 for four decades from the late 1970s until his reign ended in 2017 following US giant Liberty Media’s takeover of the sport. 

The ex-F1 supremo has made headlines for the wrong reasons in recent months. 

In May, he was arrested in Brazil for illegally carrying a gun while boarding a flight, before he was forced to apologise for controversial comments made about Vladimir Putin

Ecclestone apologised to Sky after calling Putin a “first class person” and saying he would take a bullet for the Russian president, who approved an invasion of Ukraine in February.