Former VW Engineer Sentenced To 40 Months In Prison For His Role In Dieselgate Scandal

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One of the first Volkswagen employees to be sentenced in the Dieselgate scandal has been handed a lengthy prison term by U.S. District Court Judge Sean Cox.

As Automotive News reports, Judge Cox sentenced former Volkswagen engineer James Liang to 40 months in prison. The 63-year old will also be forced to pay $200,000 for his role in the emissions cheating scandal which still continues to reverberate today.

Liang was facing a prison sentence of up to five years for conspiracy but he cooperated with the investigation and prosecutors said he "provided an insider's perspective of a company that had lost its ethical moorings in pursuit of increased market share and corporate profits."

Despite his cooperation, Judge Cox told Liang he committed a "serious crime" that "involves a massive fraud on the American consumer, which you knew, and you played a role in." As a result, he sentenced Liang to prison for even longer than what prosecutors had originally asked for.

The Judge says he hopes this sentence will send a message to others in the automotive industry, especially those who might be asked to do something illegal for their employers.

Additional Volkswagen employees are in the crosshairs as former executive Oliver Schmidt will be sentenced in December. He faces up to seven years in prison and fines up to $400,000.

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