Aug. 1 (UPI) — German prosecutors charged former Audi CEO Rupert Stadler with fraud Wednesday for the car company’s role in a diesel emissions cheating scandal.
Stadler, 56, and three other people not named, were charged with developing illegal software applications known as “defeat devices” that were installed in vehicles sold under the Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche brands to cheat diesel emissions tests, prosecutors said.
The four also were charged with falsifying certificates and illegal advertising.
Prosecutors stated that Stadler was aware of the manipulation, but failed to prevent vehicles with the cheating software installed from being sold.
The charges relate to nearly 435,000 Audi, Porsche and Volkswagen vehicles designated for sale in U.S. and European markets.
Stadler worked for the Volkswagen series of brands since 1990 and was arrested in June 2018 in relation to the case.
In October of last year, Audi was ordered to pay $930 million to German regulators after admitting its role in the scandal.
Audi issued a statement on the latest charges, noting that the “presumption of innocence continues to apply to all defendants” until the allegations against them have been clarified.
“Our company continues to cooperate fully with the investigating authorities in order to clarify the circumstances that led to the diesel crisis,” the company said. “This clarification is a prerequisite for the successful new start.”