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Dieselgate: Volkswagen Pleads Guilty In U.S. Lawsuit, Sentence Arrives In April

Volkswagen’s lawsuit filed by the American government on the matter of Dieselgate has reached an important step. The company’s representatives have pleaded guilty to three criminal charges.
Stripped-out Volkswagen Golf TDI 1 photo
Instead of knocking the hammer and sentencing the German conglomerate after its lawyers have pleaded guilty to charges that include conspiracy, U.S. District Court Judge Sean Cox decided to hold off on sentencing.

He told the attorneys of the government and the automaker that this offense was “very, very serious,” and that the court needed to hold off until it makes the final determination of fines and penalties.

As Detroit News notes, both legal teams requested the judge to accept Volkswagen’s plea, and sentence the company to follow the terms of its previous agreement, which involves paying $2.8 billion in criminal fines, along with $1.5 billion in civil penalties.

The guilty plea, in this case, could lead to results in other lawsuits against the German automaker, which is why it is even more important to learn the verdict made by the U.S. District Court.

Volkswagen’s general counsel, Manfred Doess, pleaded guilty on behalf of the corporation for the following charges: conspiring to deceive the United States by breaking the Clean Air Act, charging of entry of goods by false statements, and obstructing justice during the government’s investigation.

Each of the charges above is a serious crime in itself, but three of them probably made the judge to postpone the ruling in this case, which is probably being watched by his homologs across the globe. Volkswagen’s guilty plea is not enough for some, as people still want to be sure that the company will get a fine to fit the gravity of the crime.

According to John Neal, Assistant U.S. Attorney, the federal guidelines in this case call for a fine between $17 and $34 billion, and the statement comes from the discussion between the lawyer and the U.S. District Court judge.

However, some believe that it would be fair to reduce the penalties enforced on Volkswagen because the company did disclose its conduct to the government and agreed to be monitored by an independent third party for three years.

 
 
 
 
 

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