Judge sentences Volkswagen executive to 7 years in prison, plus a fine

Judge sentences Volkswagen executive to 7 years in prison, plus a fine

A German national drew the maximum penalty under a plea bargain that had the USA -based Volkswagen executive sentenced to seven years in prison for his role in a diesel-emissions scandal, according to multiple reports.

The prison term of seven years was announced along with $400,000 fine today in a US District Court in Detroit.

He pleaded guilty in August to conspiring to defraud the United States and violating the Clean Air Act. Oliver Schmidt will be sentenced Wednesday in Detroit federal court. "You saw this as your opportunity to shine. and climb the corporate ladder at VW".

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German Volkswagen executive Oliver Schmidt.

"I made bad decisions and for that I am sorry", he said.

Defense lawyers had sought a sentence of only 40 months and a Dollars 100,000 fine, saying Schmidt's participation in the conspiracy had not occurred until nine years after it began and that he had expressed remorse.

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Right from the time when Volkswagen's scheme was exposed, the auto-company had said yes to paying billions to settle the criminal and civil lawsuit in the US.

Instead, Schmidt was sentenced to the maximum penalties outlined in the plea deal. The first employee, former engineer James Laing, was sentenced to 40 months in prison and a $200,000 fine, in August. The software allowed the cars to pass emissions tests under lab conditions, while disabling the emissions-control software under real-world driving conditions so the cars would have better performance.

VW used sophisticated software to cheat emissions rules on almost 600,000 United States vehicles.

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Schmidt ran Volkswagen's USA engineering and environmental office from 2012 through early 2015 and was responsible for obtaining regulatory approval for vehicles sold in the United States.

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