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German police searches Volkswagen headquarters in Wolfsburg

16 March, 2017, 00:19 | Author: Paula Vaughn

Audi was responsible for designing and manufacturing some of the engines that enabled the Volkswagen to cheat on emissions tests. The German company has agreed to fork out over $1bn (£820m) to fix or buy back the 80,000 cars as part of an U.S. settlement.

"Prosecutors from Munich and Stuttgart searched offices at our sites in Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm", an Audi spokesman confirmed to AFP, adding that "we are cooperating fully with the authorities".

On Wednesday, the prosecutor released a statement that cited suspicion that the cars sold in the US between 2009 and 2015, were also fitted with devices and technology to cheat tests.

The raids today focussed on who was involved in the use of any illicit software used in 80,000 VW, Audi and Porsche cars with bigger 3.0 litre engines.

Ingolstadt-based Audi said it had every intention and interest in getting to the bottom of the emissions-cheating scandal.

Sales in European markets are not part of the investigation, the prosecutor's office said in a statement.

Audi's two biggest plants were searched by German prosecutors today while its chief exec was announcing the auto giant's earnings at its annual press conference today. "We will keep at it".

Why Valeant Pharmaceuticals Intl Inc(NYSE: VRX) stock will be under pressure today
The specialty pharmaceutical company reported $1.26 EPS for the quarter, topping the Zacks' consensus estimate of $1.20 by $0.06. Add Bill Ackman to the long list of investors who want nothing to do with the struggling drug maker Valeant Pharmaceuticals .

Stadler said his private home was not searched in the raid.

"There is still a long way to go before (dieselgate) is finally cleared up", Stadler told journalists at the firm's annual results press conference today.

Stadler declined comment on the possibility that ongoing investigations could bring about further personnel changes and referred to moves announced previously.

A former head of diesel engine development, Ulrich Weiss, has accused Audi boss Rupert Stadler of knowing about the engine manipulation early on. The four ringed brand's leader also noted that the efforts to recover from the scandal are "far from over".

The raid at Audi's sites coincided with the company's annual press conference, in which it reported pre-tax profits of 3bn euros (£2.6bn) for 2016, a 37% drop on the previous year.

More than two million Audis had the manipulated software, including more than half a million in Germany alone. Audi's deliveries in China fell 5.8 percent to 32,155 cars last month.

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