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Martin Winterkorn: Ex-Volkswagen CEO charged fraud on diesel



On Monday, Prosecutors in Braunschweig announced that Winterkorn was one of five people accused in a case related to the car manufacturer's diesel emissions fraud scandal.

Winterkorn has been accused of a particularly serious fraud, according to a statement by prosecutors. The fee bears a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison.

The former CEO was also responsible for poisoning and breaches of competition law. He could be ordered to repay the bonuses he received as a reward for sales.

Prosecutors claim that Winterkorn was aware that diesel emissions were being manipulated as early as 2014, but failed to inform authorities and customers. Volkswagen admitted the following year to cheat on clean air rules with software that made the emissions less toxic than they actually were.
Winterkorn's lack of stopping exercise resulted in "significantly higher" fines against Volkswagen in Europe and the United States, according to prosecutors. The scandal has cost the car manufacturer about $ 32 billion.
Volkswagen ( VLKAF ) refused to comment on the costs and describe them as a private matter.

Felix Dörr, lawyer for Winterkorn, said that he would only be able to comment on the charges when he had read the entire charge.

Prosecutors said they had sent the accusation and 75,000 pages of additional evidence for a court in Braunschweig who will decide whether Winterkorn will be in trial.

Another 36 people remain under investigation.

  EU accuses German car manufacturers of delaying clean air technology
Winterkorn was brought by US federal prosecutors in 2018 due to fraud and conspiracy. He was accused of deceiving Volkswagen's US customers and violating the Clean Air Act.

Last year, the US Securities and Exchange Commission also announced that it had been sued Volkswagen and Winterkorn, and accused them of carrying out "a massive fraud".

The market regulator said that Volkswagen and Winterkorn abandoned thousands of dollars from investors, including by persuading the firm's environmental credentials.

Sales of Volkswagen diesel-powered cars are now being rebuilt in Germany. About 43% of all Volkswagen brand cars sold in Germany last year were diesel, close to their 49% scandal.

Chris Liakos and Stephanie Halasz contributed to this article.


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