Volkswagen has been under fire again for the diesel emissions scandal. German prosecutors allege that three top executives at Volkswagen did not inform the investors in time about the financial fallout the company bore due to the scandal.
CEO Herbert Diess, former CEO Martin Winterkorn, and Chairman Hans Dieter Potsch have attracted scrutiny and prosecutors are working to establish the facts. Volkswagen called the allegations baseless, and the German automaker’s lawyers announced that Diess would continue as the company’s chief.
Volkswagen had installed “defeat devices” to manipulate emissions testing, and it admitted using this illegal technique in 2015.VW issued a statement which said that the company had thoroughly investigated the matter and took help from internal and external legal experts. This process which has been going for four years concludes that the allegations are groundless.
Diess’s lawyer said that the current chief hadn’t joined the firm until July 2015 so he would have no idea about the depth of the scandal. Lawyers for the other two executives said that there’s no reason to blame them for the scandal.
Winterkorn and three managers from Volkswagen were charged with fraud. This is the second indictment for company executives since the scandal broke in 2015.
It was September 2015 when the company admitted to cheating emissions testing in 600,000 Volkswagen cars sold in the United States. Cars manufactured between 2009 and 2015 were fitted with the “defeat device,” and millions of such vehicles were sold across the world. Then CEO Martin Winterkorn resigned after the scandal broke out. Weiss joined VW in 2015 and later occupied the top post.
Prosecutors said that Winterkorn should have informed the authorities and car owners in time about the diesel emissions manipulations. The US SEC had sued the company and erstwhile CEO Winterkorn a month earlier. The SEC said that Volkswagen had issued bonds worth billions of dollars and cheated investors without informing them about the cheats.