Although both parties continue to plead their innocence over their participation in the now-infamous three-day test which was held at Barcelona's Circuit de Catalunya in the week after May's Spanish GP, the FIA opened proceedings by charging Mercedes with "obtaining information during the test" which was "self-evidently prejudicial to the sporting competition".
Proceedings get underway in Paris for the FIA tribunal into test-gate, the FIA has declared they did not grant permission for the Mercedes – Pirelli test to go ahead.
The FIA have stated any claims by Mercedes that race director Charlie Whiting gave the all clear for the test are “irrelevant"
“Whether or not Whiting consented, it is irrelevant, because testing in relation to Article 22 is a breach, unless it [a rule change] is granted by the World Motor Sport Council," said FIA representative Mark Howard QC.
“Whiting was asked a general and non-specific question – the general question on the permissibility of using a 2013 car.
“His preliminary response was that such a test would comply with Article 22 providing purpose was for Pirelli to test its tire," but with an older car per the rules.
“This communication was not an agreement by the FIA – it was nothing more than Whiting and Bernard’s interpretation of [article] 22."
The FIA is arguing that other teams were not invited to take part in the test.