Germany probes alleged market manipulation by former Volkswagen CEO

German prosecutors say they have launched a formal probe into alleged market manipulation by Martin Winterkorn, the former chief executive at Volkswagen, in relation to the diesel emissions scandal.

Wolfsburg prosecutors said Monday that Winterkorn will be investigated alongside one other unnamed Volkswagen employee for failing to inform shareholders about the scandal in a timely fashion.

Sources told dpa that the other person being investigated is Herbert Diess, brand chief at Volkswagen and a member of the carmaker's management board. Prosecutors declined to confirm this citing privacy considerations.

Winterkorn, who resigned from Volkswagen in September shortly after the scandal was made public, is already being investigated on "allegations of fraud in the sale of cars with manipulated emissions data."

The investigation was launched in response to a criminal complaint by BaFin, Germany's financial supervisory authority.

In the German legal system, individuals and organizations can file a criminal complaint with prosecutors, who are then obliged to examine it and decide whether there is enough evidence to open a formal investigation.

Prosecutor Klaus Ziehe said he could not estimate how long the probe would take, adding that "the parties will now have to be heard and further witnesses questioned."

Some of Volkswagen's own staff warned years ago about the illegal use of so-called "defeat devices" to detect when a car was being tested and alter the running of its engines. Shareholders were informed on September 22.

Last update: Sat, 03/09/2016 - 01:26
Author: 

More from Europe

Norway: No suspects linked to stolen gate from former Nazi camp

Norwegian police said Saturday they had no suspects linked to the find of a gate believed to have been stolen in...

Scottish village gets 384,000-pound gift from former German POW

A village in Scotland has received a gift of 384,000 pounds (489,000 dollars) from a German soldier who was held...

German police record 877 attacks against refugee homes this year

There have been 877 attacks against refugee homes in Germany so far in 2016, police said Saturday, suggesting that...

Christmas tree thieves in Germany drunkenly stumble into police

Two drunk Christmas tree thieves in the south-western German city of Ulm were caught red-handed when they were...

Two migrants die in Austria while hiding in freight train

Two migrants have died in Austria while hiding in a goods train, police said on Saturday.