Volkswagen’s new chief executive officer, Herbert Diess, is believed to have met with the United States’ Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation last week to discuss the manufacturer’s emissions scandal. Details on the matter are scare at present, but the meeting would explain why the U.S. was willing to provide the CEO with a safe-passage guarantee.
While VW has previously stated its cooperation in various investigations, it declined to comment on Diess’ alleged visit to federal authorities.
According to Reuters, the trip was confirmed by two unrelated sources. The meeting, which took place on May 1st, was believed to have focused on the criminal charges against former VW CEO Martin Winterkorn and any knowledge Diess held relating to a defeat device cover-up. However, the specific details of the meetings are unknown. The only items anyone can be reasonably certain of is that the CEO was in America last week, accompanied by Larry Thompson — the U.S. monitor overseeing reforms at the VW.
Based on the timing of the safe-passage deal, it would seem some sort of arrangement was reached during Diess’ testimony. But neither Reuters or Germany’s Bild were able to confirm this. We’re expecting more details to emerge later on and would not be surprised if the CEO returned to America again, since he has its assurance he will not be arrested.