The repercussions of Volkswagen Auto Group's diesel emissions scandal has reached the top ranks of the company. Audi CEO Rupert Stadler has been arrested by German authorities for allegedly having a role in the emissions tampering case. Audi has confirmed the arrest of the executive.
German prosecutors ordered the arrest of Stadler on the basis that he might suppress evidence of his alleged involvement. The courts also said that they have filed charges to 19 other Volkswagen Auto Group employees, both current and former. Prior to this, police have searched Stadler's home for evidence. At the moment, it is yet to be known if authorities did find traces of his involvement in 'dieselgate'.
Audi recalled hundreds of thousands of cars fitted with the emissions defeat device and later admitted that another 60,000 units, namely diesel-powered A6 and A7s, still have emissions software issues. As a result, Volkswagen Auto Group was fined 1 billion Euros, on top of the other fines imposed by the US and some parts of Europe.
German newspapers have reported that Stadler will be questioned on Wednesday, following a meeting with his lawyers. It is said that he may be released by next week, should he 'cooperate with the investigators'. As is stands, Stadler is the highest-ranking VW Auto Group executive to be detained by the authorities.
According to the company, Stadler has personally asked the supervisory board to suspend him as board member of both Audi and Volkswagen pending investigation.