Some pretty significant news yesterday out of Germany, as it was confirmed that authorities in that country have arrested Audi CEO Rubert Stadler – and the charge is not some routine infraction of the highway code. The executive is being held on suspicion of having potentially tampered with evidence related to diesel-engine emissions.
The bombshell regarding the decision to detain the Audi head was first brought to light by CNN.
Rupert Stadler becomes the highest-ranking executive within the Volkswagen group to be arrested in relation to the seemingly interminable diesel-engine scandal that first erupted in September 2015.
The German authorities will undoubtedly be subject to even closer scrutiny following the latest arrest. The company has refused to share details about its internal inquiry, which has resulted in the firing of a number of workers and management personnel in the past three years.
In response to the arrest, Volkswagen released only a statement, via spokesperson Nicolai Laude, to the effect that the presumption of innocence still applies to Rupert Stadler.
Sound as that principle is, equally sound is the idea that where there’s smoke…
By this point in a scandal that has now dragged on for three long years, who knows where this will ultimately lead.