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Audi CEO Rupert Stadler Arrested Over Emissions Test Cheating Scandal

18 June, 2018, 19:13 | Author: Lawrence Cooper
  • Audi A8

German authorities have detained the chief executive of Volkswagen's Audi division, Rupert Stadler, as part of a probe into manipulation of emissions controls.

Audi AG confirmed the arrest in an email and pointed out that Stadler is innocent until proven guilty, declining to comment further.

"His arrest is another low point in VW's diesel saga", said Evercore ISI analysts, who have criticized the company for being slow to reform.

The move is an extension of the emissions scandal that has rocked Volkswagen since 2015 and led to billions in fines, the arrest of executives and the indictment in the USA of its former CEO.

It was the company's biggest crisis and led to a regulatory crackdown across the auto industry.

As NPR has reported, six Volkswagen executives were indicted on May on charges of conspiracy and fraud in connection with the years-long emissions scheme, including former CEO Martin Winterkorn.

Audi CEO detained in diesel emissions case
Audi CEO Rupert Stadler Arrested Over Emissions Test Cheating Scandal

Prosecutors in the Bavarian state said the arrest was justified because of the "risk of concealment of evidence". The 55-year-old was arrested at his home in Ingolstadt in the early hours on Monday, they said.

Rupert Stadler, CEO of German vehicle producer Audi, briefs the media during the annual press conference in Ingolstadt, Germany.

VW has admitted that it cheated emissions testing by equipping diesel vehicles with software that turned on pollution controls during the tests and then turned them off at other times.

VW and Audi directors were discussing the leadership crisis in separate meetings on Monday, with one source saying Dutchman Bram Schot was the front runner to become interim Audi chief.

Stadler was accused of fraud and false advertising by German prosecuters last week.

The diesel investigation, conducted by prosecutors in Munich and Braunschweig and coordinated with the U.S. Department of Justice, has shifted to Audi and Porsche in the last two years.

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