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SEC charges Volkswagen, former CEO Winterkorn over emissions scandal

by Justin King

The SEC is apparently late to the party.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has reportedly charged Volkswagen and former chief executive Martin Winterkorn over their roles in the diesel emissions scandal.

The agency says the company "perpetrated a massive fraud" by issuing more than $13 billion in bonds and asset-backed securities to American investors when executives were aware that vehicles were in violation of emissions regulations, according to a court filing reported by CNBC.

"By concealing the emissions scheme, Volkswagen reaped hundreds of millions of dollars in benefit by issuing the securities at more attractive rates for the company," the filing adds.

Volkswagen argues the SEC complaint is "legally and factually flawed" and the company plans to fight the charges.

"Regrettably, more than two years after Volkswagen entered into landmark, multibillion-dollar settlements in the United States with the Department of Justice, almost every state and nearly 600,000 consumers, the SEC is now piling on to try to extract more from the company," the automaker said in a statement.

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