BOSTON (Legal Newsline) - Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced March 30 that Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche, as well as their American subsidiaries, will pay $157 million after allegations of violating environmental laws in Massachusetts and nine other states.
Massachusetts will receive $20 million, making it the largest civil penalty ever obtained by the state in an environmental enforcement case, according to the attorney general's office.
Healey and New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman led the multistate coalition against the automakers. According to the coalition, the automakers sold more than 570,000 diesel vehicles to consumers that had illegal “defeat device” software installed to bypass emission control tests. These vehicles allegedly emitted harmful pollutants in excess of 35 times the legal limit during normal driving.
“Volkswagen, Audi and Porsche perpetrated one of the most egregious frauds in corporate history, and then repeatedly lied to the public and regulators to cover up their deceit. These companies’ actions flagrantly violated the state laws that protect public health and polluted the air that we breathe,” Healey said.
“This record-setting settlement shows state attorneys general will pursue enforcement against powerful interests that illegally deceive consumers and pollute the air.”