Volkswagen in the news, for the wrong reason, again
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Thread: Volkswagen in the news, for the wrong reason, again

  1. #1
    Senior Member meyerweb's Avatar
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    Volkswagen in the news, for the wrong reason, again

    Volkswagen Facing Class-Action Lawsuit for Allegedly Selling Illegal Pre-Production Cars as CPO

    Filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, the suit references the Dieselgate scandal, saying VW tried to "to yet again defraud consumers by illegally titling, marketing, and selling so-called certified pre-owned vehicles to unsuspecting customers."

    Allegedly, VW took pre-production press cars—cars that manufacturers routinely give us journalists to putter around in—and corporate fleet cars and passed them off as "Carfax one-owner" CPO vehicles once the media and execs were done with them.

    "Specifically, Volkswagen misrepresented the certification, prior use and mileage of these vehicles to induce the fraudulent sale of these CPO cars...when in fact, Volkswagen knew that these pre-production cars violated Federal Safety Standards and could not be legally sold in the United States," reads the lawsuit.

    What's more, VW apparently tried to hide this misconduct "by providing a secret data feed to Carfax that manipulated how and when the mileage would appear in the Carfax vehicle history reports," thereby committing Federal Odometer Fraud. Last year, it issued a recall and offered to buy back several hundred illegally titled cars.
    Volkswagen says

    Volkswagen puts the highest priority on customer satisfaction, vehicle quality and safety, and regulatory compliance. In this case, Volkswagen issued a recall in 2018 for a small number of early production vehicles sold to U.S. customers as used after they were no longer needed for internal use. We issued the recall not because of any identified defect but out of an abundance of caution after Volkswagen discovered that documentation about possible modifications made during the internal use period may be incomplete. The company is in the process of buying these vehicles back. We are reviewing a complaint which was filed in federal court for the Eastern District of Virginia on March 21. It contains numerous factual misrepresentations which we will address in due course through the appropriate legal channel.
    More here: https://www.thedrive.com/news/27410/...on-cars-as-cpo
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    And this comes on the day that Ex-VW CEO charged over Dieselgate, faces millions in fines and 10 years in prison.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsvette View Post
    And this comes on the day that Ex-VW CEO charged over Dieselgate, faces millions in fines and 10 years in prison.
    The charges are the first criminal indictment in Germany against an individual in connection with the diesel scandal. Took quite a while for the German authorities to get around to actually holding VW executives personally accountable for the fraud.

    Still hoping someday they will get ole Ferdinand Piech the godfather of the fraud:

    Name:  COPY_303319996_AR_1_HXQWPDXSIZAB.jpg
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    Ole Ferdi was an avid practitioner of the leadership style known as:

    "If you can't do it, you will be replaced by someone who can."
    Last edited by Boomer; 04-17-2019 at 07:58 AM.

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    Senior Member rdslon01's Avatar
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    Man, VW just can't go straight, even if their corporate life depended on it. Seriously, just go belly-up already!
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    OK, someone might go to prison for circumventing air pollution testing. But no one from GM was criminally charged for the ignition switch fiasco which resulted in 124 deaths.
    Last edited by Henry427; 04-17-2019 at 06:30 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Henry427 View Post
    OK, someone might go to prison for circumventing air pollution testing. But no one from GM was criminally charged for the ignition switch fiasco which resulted in 124 deaths.
    The Justice Department’s agreement with GM echoes other deals it has made in the past with big corporations, such as banks, where intentional wrongdoing by corporate executives and their employees did not result in any jail sentences.

    Lotsa heat about that. Fortunately I think that has changed since then. Seems many more cases now result in individual prosecutions. Just yesterday DOJ announced the arrest of 60 individuals including physicians and pharmacists involved in the opioid crises.

    Holding individual executives personally accountable is a much greater deterrent than just fining the corporation IMO. When I had a say in such things I would include counts against individuals when warranted.
    Last edited by Boomer; 04-18-2019 at 06:46 AM.
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    It has proven difficult to prosecute corporate executives for crimes like this because the government needs to be able to prove both foreknowledge and intent. The legal shield of a corporate entity is very strong. The law, generally, holds corporations liable for malfeasance rather than individuals. A number of such convictions (Enron, for example) have been overturned. I don't want to get too political, but in order to hold these people accountable (if that is the desired goals) we really need to update the laws.

    Oh, and you can't necessarily compare what Germany does to executives there to what the US does here. Different laws, different legal system.
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    Quote Originally Posted by meyerweb View Post
    It has proven difficult to prosecute corporate executives for crimes like this because the government needs to be able to prove both foreknowledge and intent.
    Its more work to hold corporate individuals accountable cause they are basically separate cases. The cleanest way is to add the individual as an "additional subject" to the primary case against the corporation.

    The bar for "knowledge and willfulness" isn't insurmountable for either the corporation or the individual. If the corporation committed a crime, there are likely individuals within the company that directed and carried out that activity with full knowledge and willfulness.

    It also depends on what statute or regulation is being violated. Holding individuals accountable for their actions can be done successfully and its appropriate for purposes of fairness and justice.

    I could comment on other points in your post but since this is a Stingray forum we've probably gone far enough on this topic.
    Last edited by Boomer; 04-18-2019 at 03:23 PM. Reason: clarity

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    I didn't say insurmountable. Just more difficult.
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    This is something which I just don't understand with the "foreknowledge and intent" aspect.

    Let's say I am driving down the road, and the speed limit changes from 55 MPH to 35 MPH. I honestly don't see the sign, and I have no willful desire to speed through the wide spot in the road which doesn't even look like a town.

    Am I going to get off the hook for a speeding ticket? I think not.

    Where did all of this "foreknowledge and intent" consideration come from, and why hasn't it always been available to everyone uniformly and equally?

    People either broke the law, or they didn't. I don't think "foreknowledge and intent" should have one iota to do with prosecutions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdslon01 View Post
    Let's say I am driving down the road, and the speed limit changes from 55 MPH to 35 MPH. I honestly don't see the sign, and I have no willful desire to speed through the wide spot in the road which doesn't even look like a town.
    Maybe you're on to something. Just tell the LEO that while you acknowledge you violated the speed limit, your violation lacked knowledge and willfulness therefore no ticket should be issued. The cop would probably also appreciate your opinion of his town. You should be fine.

    Don't think the legislation underlying traffic infractions requires a determination of knowledge and willfulness.

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    Senior Member rdslon01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Boomer View Post
    Maybe you're on to something. Just tell the LEO that while you acknowledge you violated the speed limit, your violation lacked knowledge and willfulness therefore no ticket should be issued. The cop would probably also appreciate your opinion of his town. You should be fine.

    Don't think the legislation underlying traffic infractions requires a determination of knowledge and willfulness.
    So, apparently there is the problem: "legislation underlying" many white collar crimes are too lax with respect to "knowledge and willfulness."

    I grew up just outside a town which was a wide spot in the road. If I told him, he would like me even more. We would be fellow kindred tiny-town terrestrials.
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    Senior Member Boomer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rdslon01 View Post
    So, apparently there is the problem: "legislation underlying" many white collar crimes are too lax with respect to "knowledge and willfulness."
    There's no problem.

    Rather than speeding, lets say you're Ferdinand and you gather your executives in a conference room and demand they make those VW TDI diesel cars so they pass US emission tests. I know your names and if you can't do it, you will be replaced by someone who can.

    Is your mindset "you have enough engineering, scientific expertise and resources to make this happen legally? OR, is your mindset "I know its impossible to do, so find a way to defeat the testing process"?

    Big difference when deciding whether Ferdi committed a crime.
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