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Daimler Sausage-fest Goes Sour After Shareholder Takes Extra Saitenwürschtle

Police were called to a shareholder meeting after one investor was caught sneaking extra sausages.

ERFURT, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 15:  German Chancellor Angela Merkel holds a original grilled  Thuringian sausage during an election rally on September 15, 2009 in Erfurt, Germany. German Chancellor Angela Merkel of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) tours during her election campaign rally through six German cities in the historic 'Rheingold' train. The 17th German federal election is scheduled for September 27, 2009 and will be held to elect the members of the Bundestag, the federal parliament of Germany.  (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)
ERFURT, GERMANY - SEPTEMBER 15: German Chancellor Angela Merkel holds a original grilled Thuringian sausage during an election rally on September 15, 2009 in Erfurt, Germany. German Chancellor Angela Merkel of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) tours during her election campaign rally through six German cities in the historic 'Rheingold' train. The 17th German federal election is scheduled for September 27, 2009 and will be held to elect the members of the Bundestag, the federal parliament of Germany. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)

How many free sausages does it take to satisfy a group of luxury car company shareholders at a meeting in Berlin? More than 12,500, it turns out.

Daimler, a German auto-giant and the Mercedes-Benz parent company, invited 5,500-odd of its shareholders to a yearly gathering in the German capital Wednesday to celebrate the company’s highest-ever dividend and answer questions from its investors.

Things went south around noon, when it came time for the traditional lunch buffet, and one hungry shareholder thought he’d wrap up a couple of extra sausages and sneak them for himself. Turns out he wasn’t as sneaky as he thought. A fellow investor called him out on taking more than his share, as it were, and the two got into a screaming match so intense that Daimler staff called the police “to settle the matter,” as Daimler board chairman Manfred Bischoff put it to reporters Wednesday.

The one who was caught lingering at the buffet found himself in a uniquely German situation: Erklärungsnot, or “the exact moment you are caught with your hand in the cookie jar and forced to explain yourself with only a split second to think.”

He must not have taken much time to reflect before launching into his defense: The woman who caught the sausage stealer in the act is filing a complaint for slander against him.

Bischoff said it might have been Daimler’s fault for thinking 12,500 sausages was enough for the 5,500 attendees. “We either need more sausages or we get rid of them altogether,” he said Wednesday.

Photo credit: ANDREAS RENTZ/Getty Images

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