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Breaking: Audi CEO Rupert Stadler Arrested in Emissions Scandal

On Monday morning, German auto group Volkswagen said German authorities have arrested Audi’s CEO Rupert Stadler.
Rupert Stadler arrested 1 photo
The auto group has not released any other additional details, limiting itself at saying the investigation is still ongoing and a subsequent hearing would determine whether Stadler would be remanded following the arrest, as BBC reports..

The news of Stadler’s arrest comes only days after Volkswagen accepted without contesting a huge fine handed by German authorities. On June 13,  the Braunschweig public prosecutor fined Volkswagen 1 billion euro.

Should Stadler be formally charged, he would become the second high-profile VW executive to be prosecuted on diesel emission cheating charges.

Back in May,  the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) formally charged former VW CEO Martin Winterkorn with conspiracy to defraud the U.S. government and customers, wire fraud, and conspiracy to violate the Clean Air Act.

The U.S. believes Winterkorn is in Germany but did not announce yet plans to arrest or extradite him. Volkswagen said in a statement that it does not comment on individual cases.

According to the papers filed in court, the CEO was at one point informed of the illegal practices of the company and decided to cover them up.

He allegedly found out of the so-called defeat device installed in the carmaker’s cars in 2014, following a study of West Virginia University’s Center for Alternative Fuels, Engines, and Emissions.

When the group’s new CEO, Herbert Diess, took over in April, he promised  the new Volkswagen should be “more honest, more open, and more truthful.”

To achieve that, Volkswagen said it would “expand its internal whistleblower system” and would encourage a “culture of constructive dissent.

In the years since the dieselgate scandal broke, Volkswagen moved on, with the incident having little effects on the number of cars it sold since. In 2017 alone, the group posted record sales of 10.53 million cars worldwide, making it a contender for the title of world's best selling automaker.

The scandal did however result in huge fines for the group and the recall of millions of vehicles, most of which now rust away in parking lots across the globe.

 
 
 
 
 

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