Volkswagen shares and Audi shares are both trading lower Monday as Audi’s CEO Rupert Stadler has been arrested. The arrest was announced by Audi’s parent company VW and comes as the German carmaker is being investigated for diesel emissions cheating.
By around 1030 BT, Volkswagen shares were 1.70% lower at €155.90. Audi shares, meanwhile, slid 2.72% to €786.
VW confirms Audi CEO’s arrest
The news of Stadler’s arrest in relation to the deepening investigation into Audi’s diesel emissions cheating activities, came as VW confirmed the action in a statement.
“We confirm that Mr Stadler was arrested this morning. The hearing to determine whether he will be remanded is ongoing,” a spokesperson for the German carmaker’s parent company said.
The arrest was also confirmed by Munich prosecutors citing collusion, according to a Bloomberg report.
Audi recalled some 850,000 of its vehicles in 2017, although only some of them required modifications to ensure they had the correct software that wouldn’t cheat emissions testing.
However, Audi admitted in May that up to 60,000 Audi A6 and A7 models with diesel engines had been fitted with incorrect emissions testing software.
Diesel-gate scandal continues
The diesel emissions scandal began in 2015 when Volkswagen admitted it had fitted hundreds of thousands of its diesel engine vehicles with software that would produce much lower emissions test results under lab condition than when driven on the open road.
It was eventually found that some 11 million cars likely had the circumventing software. That’s something that has led to numerous fines and court cases.
Indeed, just last week VW was fined €1 billion by a German prosecutor for its diesel cheating activities – the highest fine it could have received. That’s in addition to a $4.3 billion fine it had to pay in the US.
And, while that marks the end of criminal proceedings against VW for those past cases, there’s still the potential for more cases to come from private claims.