Another VW engineer faces justice for emissions cheating

By Elliot Bullman

Former Volkswagen engineer James Liang is taking the fall for his employer´s sins. Liang was sentenced to 40 months in federal prison for his role in the company's multiyear scheme to sell diesel cars that generated more pollution than US clean air rules allowed.

VW emissions

US District Court judge Sean Cox in Detroit also ordered Liang to pay a $US200,000 ($A251,900) fine, 10 times the amount sought by federal prosecutors.

While his defence argued for house arrest considering he’d only “blindly executed” his marching orders out of “misguided loyalty.” The prosecution had other ideas, and felt that a prison sentence would “send a powerful deterrent message” to the rest of the auto industry.

VW emissions2

Liang was part of a long-term conspiracy that perpetrated a "stunning fraud on the American consumer", Cox said, as the defendant's family looked on in the courtroom. "This is a very serious and troubling crime against our economic system."

Volkswagen has admitted that it used software to deceive regulators in the US and Europe from 2006 to 2015.

VW emissions3

US prosecutors have charged eight current and former Volkswagen executives in connection with the diesel emissions cheating probe. Liang is one of the lowest-ranking executives charged so far. Another VW executive, Oliver Schmidt, has pleaded guilty and is scheduled to be sentenced in Detroit on December 6.

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