Exclusive Three U.S. States Seek Damages in VW Lawsuits

The states of New York, Massachusetts and Maryland have filed separate lawsuits against Volkswagen, accusing the automaker of violating their environmental laws by cheating on diesel emissions tests. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said Volkswagen should pay “substantial penalties…above and beyond the amount they have to pay American consumers as a whole.” In June, Volkswagen reached a $15.3 billion settlement in the United States that included up to $10 billion to compensate the owners of two-liter diesel owners. The lawsuits allege that Volkswagen’s engineering department tried to delete or remove incriminating data in August of 2015 despite a warning by a senior attorney against such actions, the news agency Reuters reported. The suit filed by New York alleges that former Volkswagen chief executive, Martin Winterkorn, and the former head of marketing, Christian Kingler, knew by the spring of 2014 about the software installed in diesel vehicles to cheat emissions tests but did nothing. “The allegations against Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche reveal a culture of deeply-rooted corporate arrogance, combined with a conscious disregard for the rule of law or the protection of public health and the environment,” Mr. Schneiderman said. The New York attorney general’s office said more states may file lawsuits. Read the full story in Wednesday’s Handelsblatt Global Edition  Picture Source: DPA