Volkswagen executive gets 7 years in prison for emissions scandal

Volkswagen executive gets 7 years in prison for emissions scandal

But at the sentencing in Detroit judge Sean Cox sided with the prosecution.

In August, VW engineer James Liang was sentenced to 40 months in prison for his role in helping the German carmaker cheat United States emissions tests. In the month of August, the former Volkswagen manager in MI pleaded guilty for his job in the automaker's emission-cheating scam. Judge Cox told Schmidt during the sentencing hearing that he "viewed the cover-up as an opportunity to shine and climb up the corporate ladder".

Alongside the sentence Schmidt was fined $400,000. The government says he later misled US investigators and destroyed documents.

Last week, Schmidt's attorneys made a last-minute bid requesting a lighter sentence for Schmidt: 40 months of supervised release and a $100,000 fine. Both the jail term and the fine were at the top end of sentencing guidelines.

Schmidt's lawyers argued that his role only heated up in 2015, years after others at VW hatched the scheme.

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The company was forced to pay a $4.8 billion fine including a $2.8 criminal fine and a $1.5 billion civil fine.

According to the January 2017 complaint against Schmidt, the executive "offered technical reasons and excuses such as "irregularities" or "abnormalities" for the discrepancy without revealing the fundamental reason for the higher NOx measurements on the road: software intentionally installed in VW vehicles so the vehicles could detect and evade emissions testing". "As a outcome of that role, he was literally in the room for important decisions during the height of the criminal scheme".

Schmidt, who had returned to Germany, was arrested in Florida in January after attempting to return home from a vacation following the filing of an Federal Bureau of Investigation complaint.

Schmidt, 48, the second and most senior employee to plead guilty in the affair, is among seven current and former VW executives that United States prosecutors have charged so far.

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