Ex-VW exec sentenced to seven years for 'dieselgate'

Ex Volkswagen executive jailed in US amid diesel scandal

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.

Schmidt, as the general manager of Volkswagen's Engineering and Environmental Office in MI, was responsible for the company's relationship with California's regulatory agency and as per the reports, fed federal regulators with incorrect information.

He pleaded guilty in August to conspiring to defraud the United States and violating the Clean Air Act.

The former general manager in charge of Volkswagen's environmental and engineering office has been fined and jailed in the USA, after pleading guilty to helping cover up the firm's diesel emissions scandal.

But Judge Sean Cox sided with prosecutors, calling Schmidt a "key conspirator" who viewed the coverup as an opportunity to "shine" and "climb the corporate ladder". The government said he later misled investigators and destroyed key documents.

Reuters reports that in a letter filed in court and first published by Bild am Sonntag Schmidt wrote that he had agreed to follow a script agreed by Volkswagen management and a lawyer, at a meeting with Alberto Ayala, a California Air Resources Board executive. £298,000). Both the imprisonment and fine were at the top end of sentencing guidelines.

Liang and Schmidt are among eight VW executives criminally charged for their alleged roles in the scheme.

Volkswagen in March pleaded guilty to three felony counts to settle claims the German carmaker installed software to produce fake emission results.

The company was forced to pay a $4.8 billion fine including a $2.8 criminal fine and a $1.5 billion civil fine. As VW Group rolled out its massive "clean diesel" marketing campaign appealing to environmentally conscious vehicle buyers, those same cars were actually emitting nitrogen oxide (NOx) many times in excess of the legal limit.

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