A federal magistrate judge on Thursday arraigned a former top Volkswagen official for allegedly misleading the U.S. government about the automaker’s efforts to cheat on emissions tests.
Volkswagen admits it installed software in diesel cars designed to fool government officials into thinking that the vehicles were emitting much lower levels of pollution than they actually were.
Several VW executives have been charged in connection with the case, including Oliver Schmidt, the former U.S. head of emissions compliance.
He was arraigned in a Detroit courtroom on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States, violating the Clean Air Act and helping to commit wire fraud.
Schmidt faces a maximum of more than 20 years in prison if convicted of all charges.
Volkswagen is expected to plead guilty in connection to the cheating scandal next month and faces billions of dollars in fines and penalties.