VW executive receives maximum prison sentence for his role in Dieselgate
08 December, 2017, 02:01 | Author: Barbara Daniel
Sean Cox, the same District Court gave the sentencing.
Although the initial stages of the scheme to goose emissions numbers started as early as 2004 at Audi, Schmidt and his lawyers assert that the executive only found out about the software in the summer of 2015, a few months before the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) made public VW Group's violation.
"In my opinion, you were a key conspirator, responsible for the cover-up in the United States", Cox said.
Schmidt read a written statement in court acknowledging his guilt and broke down when discussing his family's sacrifices on his behalf since his arrest in January. The government said he later misled investigators and destroyed key documents. £298,000). Both the imprisonment and fine were at the top end of sentencing guidelines.
Schmidt traveled to the USA as the scandal was breaking on a mission to lie to U.S. and Californian authorities so Volkswagen could obtain regulatory approvals to sell 2016 model year diesel vehicles in the United States, according to prosecutors. Schmidt's lawyers argued that his role only heated up in 2015, years after others at VW hatched the scheme, which violated the Clean Air Act.
In March, Volkswagen AG pleaded guilty to three felonies and agreed to pay a $2.8 billion criminal fine.
Liang and Schmidt are among eight VW executives criminally charged for their alleged roles in the scheme.
Schmidt, who had returned to Germany, was arrested in Florida in January after attempting to return home from a vacation following the filing of an Federal Bureau of Investigation complaint.
Half a dozen other former VW executives are still at large, but Schmidt's stiff sentence could lessen the odds of others indicted in the case being prosecuted, with many residing in Germany, the Detroit Free Press reported.
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