1 Volkswagen Emissions Scandal Update

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Volkswagen Emissions Scandal Update


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The Volkswagen emissions scandal may finally be coming to an end, with the company agreeing to pay the United States AU$5.8billion in fines.

The total costs of the scandal is close to AU$27billion and while six high level employees have been implicated in the saga, many will not face penalties for their roles.

Prosecutors against the German auto giant revealed an elaborate scheme inside the company to commit fraud and then cover it up, with at least 40 employees allegedly involved in destroying evidence.

Six supervisors were accused of lying to environmental regulators and destroying computer files containing evidence.

The only company head figure to be arrested was Oliver Schmidt, who was seized over the weekend during a visit to Miami.

While all six Volkswagen supervisors are German citizens, the five who remain in Germany may potentially never face charges due to German law which bars extradition of the country’s citizens except within the European Union.

The company pleaded guilty to conspiracy, obstruction of justice and importing vehicles by using false statements in 2015.

But even after that admission prosecutors claim employees were busy covering up evidence and deleting computer files.  

Volkswagen admitted installing software in diesel engines on nearly 600,000 VW, Porsche and Audi vehicles in the U.S. that activated pollution controls during government tests and switched them off in real-world driving.

The software allowed the cars to spew harmful nitrogen oxide at up to 40 times above the legal limit.

Worldwide, more than 11 million vehicles were equipped with the defeat device.

Volkswagen has agreed to cooperate in the continuing investigation and allow an independent monitor oversee its compliance for three years.

 Related: German Car Giant in Strife

 

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