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Audi former CEO Steed has been sentenced!

2024-02-24 Update From: AutoBeta autobeta NAV: AutoBeta > News >


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Rupert Stadler, the former head of Audi, was given a 21-month suspended sentence by a Munich court on June 27th, becoming the first former Volkswagen board member to be sentenced for an emissions scandal. It is understood that Steed will have to pay a fine of 1.1 million euros (about 8.7 million yuan), which will be paid to the treasury and non-governmental organizations. Prosecutors initially fined Steed 2 million euros (15.83 million yuan) on the grounds that he received huge salaries at Audi and Volkswagen.


According to the data, Steed joined Audi in 1990, transferred to Volkswagen Group as group chairman in 1997, returned to Audi in 2003, and became chairman of Audi's management board in 2007. In 2010, Steed officially became the CEO of Audi.


In 2015, Volkswagen added a failure protector to the 2.0TDI diesel engine in order to pass the EPA emission test, and designed a software mechanism for it: if the device detects that it is currently in a laboratory environment, it will turn on the exhaust purification device, but if it is detected to be driving normally outside, it will choose to turn off the exhaust purification device. In other words, Volkswagen cars will obviously emit emissions when they are on the road, but under laboratory tests, there is no problem with the test results, which quickly attracted the attention of local consumers and institutions.


On September 18, 2015, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) accused Volkswagen of violating the US Clean Air Act (Clean Air Act) by revealing that some of Volkswagen's products were falsified by software control in US emission tests, thereby concealing the true emission situation. The outbreak of the biggest scandal in the history of the auto industry triggered a sharp shock within the Volkswagen group and a major blow to the group's reputation.

Since then, German prosecutors are still investigating the Volkswagen "diesel gate" emissions scandal, including market manipulation by Herbert Deiss, Hans Dieter Potts and Winterkorn. These executives are accused of being too late to inform the market of the diesel gate incident and its impact.

On June 18, 2018, Audi CEO Rupert Steed was formally arrested for trying to conceal evidence related to a diesel emissions investigation. On June 25, 2018, Steed was detained in Gablingen Prison in Augsburg, Germany, on charges of fraud and direct fraud, but the duration of detention is unknown. If no clear evidence is obtained during the detention period, he will be released. If convicted, he will be held for 6 months to 10 years. In October 2018, Volkswagen terminated its contract with Audi CEO Steed.

Steed, who has been accused of failing to stop the sale of affected diesel vehicles in Europe, has called himself innocent and blamed engineers for failing to detect widespread cheating, even though US authorities have discovered engine manipulation problems. In May, Steed finally relented when he admitted to the court that he had committed fraud because of negligence. He should have stopped the sale of cheating vehicles after the Audi diesel emissions scandal, but he failed to exclude cheating vehicles from the market. Even after the scandal became known to the public.

Since then, German prosecutors are still investigating the Volkswagen "diesel gate" emissions scandal, including market manipulation by Hans Dieter Potts and Winterkorn. These executives are accused of being too late to inform the market of the diesel gate incident and its impact.

FILE - In this Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017 file photo Martin Winterkorn, former CEO of the German car manufacturer 'Volkswagen', arrives for a questioning at an investigation committee of the German federal parliament in Berlin, Germany. A German court has ruled that former Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn must face trial on a second set of charges related to the company's diesel emissions scandal, these ones related to alleged market manipulation. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn, file)

Two other former Audi executives on trial alongside Mr Steed, Wolfgang Hatz, a former head of engine research and development at Audi and later Volkswagen's chief engineer, were sentenced to 24 months' probation and a fine of 400000 euros, respectively, as well as 21 months' probation and 50, 000 euros fines.

It is worth mentioning that this is only part of the Volkswagen "emissions gate" trial, the case of former Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn (Martin Winterkorn) is still ongoing, but he may go unpunished because of health problems.

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