Volkswagen executive tells judge he was “misused” by VW
In a letter to the US federal judge who will sentence him on Wednesday, former Volkswagen executive Oliver Schmidt wrote "I must say that I feel misused by my own company in the diesel scandal or ‘Dieselgate'."
Schmidt is one of the most senior executives to be charged in the diesel emissions scandal that rocked Volkswagen Group in late 2015. The scandal broke when the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) accused VW Group of installing illegal software on its diesel vehicles that would suppress the emissions control system while the car was being driven under normal driving conditions, thereby giving the cars better performance.
Schmidt, who was 48 at the time of his arrest, was in charge of emissions compliance for Volkswagen cars sold in the US during the years that VW pushed its "clean diesel" vehicles with emissions-defeating software. In the aftermath of the scandal, Schmidt left VW and returned to Germany, but he was arrested in January while on vacation in Miami. In August, the executive pleaded guilty to two charges: conspiracy to defraud the US government and violate the Clean Air Act, and making a false statement under the Clean Air Act.