• 4 minutes Oil Price Editorial: Beware Of Saudi Oil Tanker Sabotage Stories
  • 7 minutes Mueller Report Brings Into Focus Obama's Attempted Coup Against Trump
  • 11 minutes Magic of Shale: EXPORTS!! Crude Exporters Navigate Gulf Coast Terminal Constraints
  • 14 minutes Wonders of Shale- Gas,bringing investments and jobs to the US
  • 12 mins Trump needs to educate US companies and citizens on Chinese Communist Party and People's Liberation Army. This is real ECONOMIC WARFARE. To understand Chinese warfare read General Sun Tzu's "Art of War" . . . written 500 B.C.
  • 22 mins Evil Awakens: Fascist Symbols And Rhetoric On Rise In Italian EU Vote
  • 3 hours Is $60/Bbl WTI still considered a break even for Shale Oil
  • 1 hour Level-Headed Analysis of the Future of U.S. Shale Oil Industry
  • 5 hours Asia Oil Refiners Mull Run Cuts With Margins At 16 yrs. Low For Season
  • 3 hours Trump bogged down in Mideast quagmire. US spent $Trillions, lost Thousands of lives, and lost goodwill. FOR WHAT? US interests ? WHAT INTEREST ? . . . . China greatest threat next 50 years.
  • 9 hours Devastating Sanctions: Iran and Venezuela hurting
  • 3 hours Why is Strait of Hormuz the World's Most Important Oil Artery
  • 33 mins Apartheid Is Still There: Post-apartheid South Africa Is World’s Most Unequal Country
  • 3 hours Misunderstanding between USA and Iran the cause of current stand off, I call BS
  • 4 hours ARAMCO BOARD: Former Dow Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris: I want to help Saudi Arabia become a 21st century economy
  • 5 hours IMO 2020 could create fierce competition for scarce water resources
  • 5 hours IMO2020 To scrub or not to scrub

U.S. Prosecutors Say VW Stalling Emissions Probe

Volkswagen doesn’t appear to be helping its case in the United States. Already the federal government is suing the German automaker over violations of the country’s strict clean-air standards, and now attorneys general from several states are accusing it of dragging its feet in helping their separate investigations.

Perhaps most outspoken is New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, one of 48 state attorneys general investigating VW. He said the company was citing on German privacy law, which allows corporate executives to deny investigators access to their emails and similar documents in their probe of emissions-cheating devices in 580,000 diesel-powered diesel vehicles sold in the United States.

In a statement on Friday, Schneiderman said VW “has failed to pursue every avenue to overcome the obstacles” his office had brought to the company’s attention. “Our patience with Volkswagen is wearing thin.” He said this “spotty” cooperation evidently is meant to delay proper responses until the company finishes its own “independent investigation’ several months from now.”

Related: This Is Good News For South American Gold Miners

Schneiderman isn’t alone in his criticism of VW. His counterpart in Connecticut, George Jepsen, complained, “I find it frustrating that, despite public statements professing cooperation and an expressed desire to resolve the various investigations that it faces following its calculated deception, Volkswagen is, in fact, resisting cooperation by citing German law.”

And a spokeswoman for Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette, Megan Hawthorne, added that “we share the frustrations" of both Jepsen and Schneiderman. “We will do what is necessary to move the investigation forward.”

Four months ago the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency discovered the use of VW’s cheating software, called a “defeat device,” and the company quickly acknowledged that it had used it, but has blamed the problem on a few employees acting independently. It has hired the consulting firm Deloitte Co. and a U.S. law firm, Jones Day, to conduct a private probe.

Related: Petro States Dipping Into Coffers As Oil Price Reality Kicks In

At company headquarters in Wolfsburg, Germany, a VW spokesman said, “We are in permanent exchange with U.S. authorities and are cooperating closely with them. We are not commenting on ongoing investigations.”

In fact, German investigators appear satisfied with VW’s cooperation so far. Klaus Ziehe, a spokesman for the prosecutor’s office in Braunschweig, the German city with jurisdiction over Wolfsburg, said in a statement that investigators there have had access to all the documents they’ve sought.

“We are not and do not want to be dependent on that which Volkswagen gives us,” Ziehe said. Nevertheless, he added, “We can’t complain about our cooperation with the company. We have the impression that we have received everything that we have specifically requested.”

Related: Morgan Stanley Joins The $20 Oil Club

As the scandal drags on, VW has acknowledged that its annual sales had fallen in 2015 for the first time in more than 10 years despite a promise by Matthias Mueller, who was named the company’s CEO shortly after news of the cheating broke, of “maximum transparency” and that his “most urgent task is to win back trust.”

That may not be easy, especially in the United States. Besides the investigations in 48 states, on Jan. 4 the U.S. Department of Justice filed a civil lawsuit against VW seeking at least $45 billion in damages.

By Andy Tully of Oilprice.com

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:



Join the discussion | Back to homepage

Leave a comment

Leave a comment

Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News