Michael Schumacher: German officials investigate 'photo' claims
Last Updated: 19/12/16 5:59pm
Prosecutors have launched an investigation in Germany after media organisations were reportedly offered what is claimed to be the first photograph of Michael Schumacher since his life-changing 2013 skiing accident.
According to RTL, the picture is being touted by an unknown seller for €1 million.
Prosecutors in Offenburg are investigating the incident as an alleged violation of Schumacher's privacy after the picture was reportedly taken and smuggled out of the German's home in Switzerland, where he continues his recovery.
Schumacher's family have not commented on the reports.
Schumacher suffered severe head injuries and was in a coma for six months after falling and hitting his head on a rock while on a family skiing holiday in the French Alps in December 2013. He returned home to Switzerland to continue receiving treatment in September 2014.
The seven-time world champion's family have been fiercely protective of the 47-year-old's privacy and at the weekend reiterated their determination to continue conducting his recovery in private, as they launched an initiative called 'Keep Fighting'.
Schumacher's manager Sabine Kehm said: "Michael's health is not a public issue, and so we will continue to make no comment in that regard. This is also because we have to protect his intimate sphere.
"Legally seen and in the longer term, every statement related to his health would diminish the extent of his intimate sphere. We are aware that this may be difficult for some people to understand but we do this with full commitment to Michael's guidelines and can only thank people for their understanding.
"Michael has always been very protective of his privacy, even during the most successful times of his career. He has always made sure there is a clear and distinct line between his public persona and his private one."
In the days immediately after Schumacher's accident in 2013, a journalist disguised as a priest attempted to gain access to the German's hospital room in Grenoble.
Schumacher is F1's most successful driver with 91 wins and seven drivers' world titles.