sport

Schumacher files stolen

Michael Schumacher’s medical notes have been stolen and documents are being offered for sale on the internet, according to the German’s manager.

This alarming news comes just days after the heartening announcement that Schumacher was no longer in a coma and had been transferred to the University Hospital of Lausanne in Switzerland.

But the theft of the F1 legend's medical files has caused further distress to his family, who have been trying to safeguard his privacy during the hospital stay since his skiing accident in December.

It is yet to be determined whether the documents offered for sale are genuine, but Schumacher's management are determined to prevent the publication of any stolen material.

A statement from Schumacher's manager Sabine Kehm read: \"For several days stolen documents and data are being offered for sale. The offeror claims them to be the medical file of Michael Schumacher.

\"We cannot judge if these documents are authentic. However, the documents are clearly stolen. The theft has been reported. The authorities are involved.

\"We expressly advise that both the purchase and the publication of such documents and data is forbidden. The contents of any medical files are totally private and confidential and must not made available to the public.

\"We will therefore, in every single case, press for criminal charges and damages against any publication of the content or reference to the medical file.

\"We trust for your understanding.\"

Media from throughout the world converged on the Grenoble hospital where Schumacher was treated after suffering serious head injuries while skiing in the Alps.

It was claimed that a journalist even dressed up as a priest in a bid to gain entry to the driver's room, and Sky Sports News' Craig Slater has expressed sadness at this latest invasion of his privacy.

\"Security was very scant indeed and it was distressing,\" said Slater.

\"The family had to run a gauntlet of paparazzi every day when they arrived at the hospital, despite repeated pleas for the media to take a step back and to respect Michael Schumacher's privacy as a patient and a human being.

\"Now they are being confronted with this, the actual medical notes going missing and potentially being auctioned over the internet. A very sad state of affairs indeed.\"