Audi CEO Rupert Stadler arrested in Germany

The CEO of luxury automaker Audi has been arrested in Germany as part of an investigation into emissions cheating....

Posted: Jun 18, 2018 2:48 PM
Updated: Jun 18, 2018 2:48 PM

The CEO of luxury automaker Audi has been arrested in Germany as part of an investigation into emissions cheating.

Munich prosecutors said Monday that Rupert Stadler, who has worked for Audi parent company Volkswagen since 1990, had been detained because of concerns he could influence witnesses in an ongoing fraud investigation.

Stadler, 55, is the highest ranking Volkswagen executive to be arrested in connection to a costly diesel emissions scandal that burst into public view in 2015.

Prosecutors said they have opened a criminal investigation into potential fraud by 20 current or former Audi employees including Stadler. The case is related to suspected emissions cheating in 240,000 diesel cars sold in the United States and Europe.

Volkswagen spokesman Nicolai Laude confirmed that Stadler had been arrested, but declined to comment on the investigation. He said the company's supervisory board would discuss the matter on Monday.

"The principle of the presumption of innocence continues to apply to Mr. Stadler," Laude added in a statement.

Shares in Volkswagen dropped by 3% in Frankfurt.

Munich prosecutors said last week they had searched Stadler's home for evidence as part of an investigation that has been underway for over a year.

Stadler was appointed to Volkswagen's management board in 2010. Prosecutors said Stadler could be released next week if he cooperates with investigators.

The arrest comes just days after Germany imposed a -1 billion ($1.2 billion) penalty on Volkswagen for rigging diesel engine emissions worldwide.

Volkswagen has admitted that it rigged millions of diesel engines to cheat on emissions tests.

Diesel cars from Volkswagen and its Audi subsidiary cheated on clean air rules with software that made emissions look less toxic than they actually were.

The scandal sent its share price plunging, and trashed confidence among consumer and regulators in diesel technology. The episode has already cost Volkswagen over $30 billion in recalls, legal penalties and settlements.

Related: Tesla Autopilot update aims to keep drivers' hands on the wheel

Martin Winterkorn, the former chief executive officer of Volkswagen, was indicted last month by US prosecutors. He was charged with wire fraud, and conspiracy to defraud American customers and violate the Clean Air Act.

Matthias Mueller, who was brought in to replace Winterkorn, stepped down earlier this year and was replaced by BMW veteran Herbert Diess.

Diess acknowledged at a press conference in April that Volkswagen had "lost a great deal of trust," and that it would take years to restore public confidence in the automaker.

-- Ivana Kottasova, Chris Liakos and Stephanie Halasz contributed reporting.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

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Cases: 314509

Reported Deaths: 7247
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21626259
Hinds20359415
Harrison17934309
Rankin13634278
Jackson13447246
Madison10099217
Lee9980174
Jones8381163
Forrest7683152
Lauderdale7191241
Lowndes6401147
Lamar623086
Lafayette6200118
Washington5339134
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Oktibbeha462798
Panola4588107
Pearl River4512146
Marshall4443103
Warren4393121
Pontotoc420772
Monroe4113133
Union411076
Neshoba4031176
Lincoln3968110
Hancock379386
Leflore3497125
Sunflower336090
Tate334084
Pike3325105
Scott315973
Alcorn313368
Yazoo311669
Itawamba300477
Copiah297065
Coahoma295479
Simpson295288
Tippah288768
Adams286882
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Marion269280
Leake268373
Wayne262641
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Covington259681
George248048
Newton246861
Winston227281
Tishomingo226967
Jasper221148
Attala214473
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Holmes189173
Clay185454
Stone182833
Tallahatchie178841
Clarke178080
Calhoun170832
Yalobusha164338
Smith162434
Walthall133945
Greene130633
Lawrence128624
Montgomery126942
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123142
Carroll121829
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107133
Tunica105726
Claiborne102430
Benton99525
Humphreys96733
Kemper95828
Franklin83823
Quitman80916
Choctaw76418
Wilkinson67331
Jefferson65728
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
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Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 532895

Reported Deaths: 11001
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson771431528
Mobile41089808
Madison34837505
Tuscaloosa25810454
Montgomery24355588
Shelby23730249
Baldwin21191309
Lee15892171
Calhoun14522316
Morgan14324279
Etowah13861353
Marshall12250223
Houston10581281
Elmore10060205
Limestone9986151
Cullman9705194
St. Clair9702243
Lauderdale9441242
DeKalb8846187
Talladega8255176
Walker7246277
Autauga6938108
Jackson6815112
Blount6694137
Colbert6310134
Coffee5524119
Dale4850111
Russell443238
Chilton4308112
Franklin426282
Covington4136118
Tallapoosa4039152
Escambia393977
Chambers3578123
Dallas3557152
Clarke351161
Marion3130101
Pike311377
Lawrence300798
Winston275673
Bibb261564
Geneva251477
Marengo249664
Pickens234761
Barbour231756
Hale223277
Butler216469
Fayette212562
Henry189044
Cherokee184745
Randolph181742
Monroe178040
Washington167639
Macon159950
Clay156857
Crenshaw152757
Cleburne149141
Lamar142935
Lowndes139053
Wilcox127130
Bullock122841
Conecuh110629
Coosa107928
Perry107826
Sumter104832
Greene92534
Choctaw61124
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