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German prosecutors accuse extra VW managers within the emissions scandal

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A logo of the German automaker Volkswagen can be seen on a car parked on a street in Paris

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BERLIN (Reuters) – The German public prosecutor's office has indicted 15 executives at Volkswagen AG (OTC 🙂 and an automotive supplier in connection with the diesel emissions scandal that occurred in 2015, a public prosecutor's office said on Saturday.

The suspects are accused of supporting and facilitating fraud in combination with tax evasion, indirect false certification and criminal advertising, said Klaus Ziehe from the public prosecutor's office in the northern city of Braunschweig.

In the scandal, more than nine million VW, Audi, Seat and Skoda vehicles were sold to consumers with a so-called defeat device that helped bypass environmental tests on diesel engines.

Prosecutors did not name any of the executives accused of putting cars on the market in a condition that was not officially approved, meaning they were illegal and misleadingly advertised, Ziehe said.

He added that the indictment had now reached 1,554 pages.

The prosecution was previously reported by the news agency Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa).

A spokesman for Volkswagen (DE 🙂 said a criminal investigation into the company was closed in 2018 after a fine was paid, adding that the company was not involved in the upcoming lead against individual suspects.

"With this in mind, we do not comment on the other charges that have come to light …" added the spokesman.

Volkswagen announced last month that it would be demanding compensation from its former CEO Martin Winterkorn and former Audi boss Rupert Stadler for the diesel emissions scandal discovered in 2015 in order to draw a line in its biggest crisis to date.

The trial against Winterkorn and the other managers was postponed to September due to the pandemic.

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