However, the names of the accused are not disclosed. German prosecutors have indicted 15 Volkswagen Group executives and suppliers in connection with the 2015 diesel emissions scandal.
The suspects are accused of aiding fraud combined with tax evasion, indirect false certification and criminal advertising, said Klaus Zieche of the prosecutor’s office in Brunswick, Lower Saxony. As a result of the scandal, more than nine million VW, Audi, SEAT and Skoda cars were sold to consumers with a device that helped bypass the environmental testing of diesel engines.
The prosecutor’s office did not name any of the leaders who are accused of supplying cars to the market in an unapproved state, that is, they were illegal and advertised with false information. The indictment was 1,554 pages long, prosecutors said on Saturday.
A VW spokesman said the criminal investigation against the company was dropped in 2018 after the payment of a fine, adding that the company was not involved in the upcoming lawsuit against individual suspects.
“Against this background, we are not commenting on other accusations brought forward,” the spokesman said.
VW said last month that it will seek damages from its former CEO Martin Winterkorn and former Audi chief Rupert Stadler in connection with the diesel emissions scandal that was discovered in 2015 as it tries to draw a line under the a big crisis in history. The trial of Winterkorn and other managers has been postponed until September due to the pandemic.