Audi CEO Rupert Stadler arrested over emissions scandal

  • Audi CEO Rupert Stadler arrested over emissions scandal

Audi CEO Rupert Stadler arrested over emissions scandal

German authorities on Monday detained the chief executive of Volkswagen's Audi division, Rupert Stadler, as part of a probe into the manipulation of emissions controls. In spite of continuous denials and public backing from the Volkswagen Group, Stadler has seemed like a man waving a crude torch in the dark, trying to fend off the hunters.

A German judge has ordered that Stadler be remanded in custody.

The auto maker installed the software in 11 million diesel cars worldwide, including 1.2 million in the United Kingdom - meaning the vehicles knew when they were being tested and cut their emissions accordingly, to meet targets artificially.

Stadler was arrested after a warrant was issued by a Munich prosecutor, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung newspaper reported, adding that his personal flat had been searched by fraud investigators last week.

Until now German prosecutors have only questioned former VW CEO Dr. Martin Winterkorn.

Stadler's arrest is the latest blow to the Volkswagen group, which has struggled to shake off the dieselgate crisis and continues to face a litany of investigations at home and overseas. Herbert Diess was given the top job in April and he said that besides focusing on new technologies, like electric cars, he wanted to build a more open, values-based culture to avoid the cheating that led to the emissions scandal.

It is understood the VW group's supervisory board will meet later in the day to discuss the development.

"Audi needs a new start", he said. That has cost it $20 billion in fines and civil settlements.

Volkswagen admitted that almost 600,000 cars sold in the United States were fitted with "defeat devices" created to circumvent emissions tests.

The scandal has so far cost the VW group more than 25 billion euros ($29 billion) in buybacks, fines and compensation, and the company remains mired in legal woes at home and overseas.