By on October 19, 2015

01 Volkswagen Jetta

Investigators in France seized documents and office equipment from Volkswagen offices there in connection with its inquiry into the automaker’s admission that it cheated emissions tests.

The raid, which happened on Friday, wasn’t reported until Sunday, according to the Wall Street Journal.

Investigators in Germany and Italy have already seized documents from Volkswagen’s respective headquarters in those countries relating to the scandal, which affects more than 11 million cars worldwide.

A spokeswoman for Volkswagen in France said the company was cooperating with investigators.

Nearly one million cars in France were fitted with the illegal “defeat device” that cheated emissions tests. A Paris prosecutor is investigating the automaker for “aggravated deception” on those 946,000 cars, according to the New York Times.

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29 Comments on “Police Raid Volkswagen France Headquarters...”

  • avatar

    I await the day that the other cheaters are raided too, this should be interesting.

    • 0 avatar

      Hopefully it will be on the same day someone is indicted for Solyndra.

      “On September 1, 2011, the company ceased all business activity, filed for bankruptcy under Chapter 11, Title 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code, and laid off all employees, costing taxpayers over $500 million.[2][3][4] The company was also sued by employees who were abruptly laid off.[27]

      On September 8, 2011, Solyndra was raided by the FBI investigating the company.[28]

      In September 2011, federal agents visited the homes of Brian Harrison, the company’s CEO, and Chris Gronet, the company’s founder, to examine computer files and documents.[29] Also, in September 2011, the US Department of the Treasury launched an investigation.[30]

      On September 29, 2011, a US Department of the Treasury official confirmed that the criminal probe of Solyndra is focused on whether the company and its officers misrepresented the firm’s finances to the government in seeking the loan or engaged in accounting fraud.[31]

      On October 7, 2011, newly revealed emails showed that the Obama administration had concerns about the legality of the Department of Energy’s loan restructuring plan and warned OMB director Jeffrey D. Zients that the plan should be cleared with the Department of Justice first, which the Department of Energy had not done. The emails also revealed that as early as August 2009, an aide to then-White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel had asked a Department of Energy official if he could discuss any concerns among the investment community about Solyndra but that the official dismissed the idea that Solyndra had financial problems.

      On October 22, 2012, in the case In re Solyndra LLC et al., No. 11-12799 (Bankr. D. Del.), Judge Mary F. Walrath of the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware ruled “that the evidence does not support a finding that the principal purpose of the plan was tax avoidance.”[4] “Solyndra’s owners, Argonaut Ventures I LLC and Madrone Partners LP” will “realize the tax benefits of between $ 875 million and $ 975 million of net operating losses, while more senior creditors, including the Department of Energy, which provided a $ 535 million loan guarantee to Solyndra, will receive nearly nothing.

      On July 12, 2013, the Contra Costa Times reported that Gronet was unlikely to face criminal charges in connection with Solyndra”

      • 0 avatar

        Thats nuts, but yes hopefully someone will be held responsible for that mess.

        Id like to see how othe carmakers cheat the test, and why VWs been the doll of dieselgate.

        • 0 avatar

          Nope, what we have learned since 2008 is the sociopaths are in charge and will go to any length to retain their power.

        • 0 avatar

          Why do you assume others are cheating? There are so few players in the non-HD diesel market in the US, Im sure that if they were not in compliance, we wouldve heard about it by now. Do you think nobody has bothered to test FCA’s EcoDiesel, BMW/Mercedes or the Chevy Cruze in the wake of this scandal?

          Or is it just wishful thinking on your part? To deflect from VW’s f’up by insinuating ” everyone is/was doing it”?

          • 0 avatar

            It’s been suspected by THIS VERY WEBSITE that BMW, Mercedes, and others have cheated the test. I see no reason to be suspicious myself.

            I do have to wonder why you stalk my VW posts, even though you’re never going to agree with me and seem to have issues with “projection”.

          • 0 avatar

            Plus, it doesn’t have to be a diesel car. Who knows what’s been done to modern gasoline engines with programming.

            I hope that nobody else has done anything like VW, but I won’t trust anyone….

          • 0 avatar
            Big Al from Oz

            There is more to the world than the USA.

            I do believe all testing should be tightened to reflect real world operation of vehicles.

            Maybe reset the emission standards to allow for more pollution, but adjust the testing to allow for a more comprehensive assessment.

            Even the USes heavily biased gasoline market should be looked into.

            Gasoline engines are designed to pass the current testing, but in real life driving the vehicles rarely meet quoted FE. Especially turbo vehicles.

            Gasoline doesn’t have the same emission standards applied to them for particualtes, do you see the auto manufacturers consciously making GDI engines meet the same standards that diesels must meet in the US?

            I do think the whole emissions/FE standards is a bit of a farce, suited to the manufacturers of each country.

            VW happened to be quite greedy and got caught out. There would be other manufacturers with their own secrets as well as VW.

            It’s like stating when that Toyota was the only auto manufacturers not reacting to serious safety issues with it’s vehicles.

            Why? Because it isn’t an American company?

      • 0 avatar

        Along with banks “too big to fail”, there are thefts too big to prosecute. It must be nice to be protected from on high.

        • 0 avatar

          I would give a citation if I could remember, but I read the idea of another central bank reemerged after the Panic of 1907, aka the Bankers Panic of 1907, in order to back up or “bail out” banks with liquidity in the event of a crisis. As cited from Wikipedia, the Panic of 1907 was a bank run which was the result of the collapse of a large trust who had lent money in a failed scheme to corner the market on the United Copper Company. The Panic was relieved by billionaire financier JP Morgan who deposited his own money into the affected banks and through media urged depositors to return with their money as well.

          “Primary causes of the run included a retraction of market liquidity by a number of New York City banks and a loss of confidence among depositors, exacerbated by unregulated side bets at bucket shops.[2] The panic was triggered by the failed attempt in October 1907 to corner the market on stock of the United Copper Company. When this bid failed, banks that had lent money to the cornering scheme suffered runs that later spread to affiliated banks and trusts, leading a week later to the downfall of the Knickerbocker Trust Company—New York City’s third-largest trust. The collapse of the Knickerbocker spread fear throughout the city’s trusts as regional banks withdrew reserves from New York City banks. Panic extended across the nation as vast numbers of people withdrew deposits from their regional banks.”

          “The panic might have deepened if not for the intervention of financier J. P. Morgan,[3] who pledged large sums of his own money, and convinced other New York bankers to do the same, to shore up the banking system. At the time, the United States did not have a central bank to inject liquidity back into the market. By November, the financial contagion had largely ended, only to be replaced by a further crisis. This was due to the heavy borrowing of a large brokerage firm that used the stock of Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Company (TC&I) as collateral. Collapse of TC&I’s stock price was averted by an emergency takeover by Morgan’s U.S. Steel Corporation—a move approved by anti-monopolist president Theodore Roosevelt. The following year, Senator Nelson W. Aldrich, father-in-law of John D. Rockefeller, Jr., established and chaired a commission to investigate the crisis and propose future solutions, leading to the creation of the Federal Reserve System.[4][5]”

          Since all banking is predicated on the massive fraud of Fractional Reserve Banking, there is only a limited amount of money on hand at any given time depending on the lending ratio. If a bank run hits, it only has enough money to fill a percentage of all depositors and will be out of money to allow the rest to withdraw or to make loans. Part of the purpose of the Federal Reserve was to create new money and provide it to member banks, it was designed to bail them out from the word, go.

          “Fractional-reserve banking is the practice whereby a bank accepts deposits, and holds reserves that are a fraction of the amount of its deposit liabilities. Reserves are held at the bank as currency, or as deposits in the bank’s accounts at the central bank. Fractional-reserve banking is the current form of banking practiced in most countries worldwide.[1]

          Fractional-reserve banking allows banks to act as financial intermediaries between borrowers and savers, and to provide longer-term loans to borrowers while providing immediate liquidity to depositors (providing the function of maturity transformation). However, a bank can experience a bank run if depositors wish to withdraw more funds than the reserves held by the bank. To mitigate the risks of bank runs and systemic crises (when problems are extreme and widespread), governments of most countries regulate and oversee commercial banks, provide deposit insurance and act as lender of last resort to commercial banks.”

      • 0 avatar

        When Halliburton is indicted and George W and Dickhead Cheney are hanged, I will worry about Solyndra. Get your priorities right and stop thinking with you ideology. George W and Dickhead Cheney can not travel outside the US or they will be arrested as war criminals. So you can save your hatred of the current president until he has actually done something worthy of indictment.

        • 0 avatar

          Indict Halliburton for what exactly? You live in a fantasy land if you haven’t noticed what Obama has been up to for the past 7 years. Google reasons to impeach Obama if you’re really as clueless as you allege to be.

          • 0 avatar

            @Charliej, CJinSD

            Now, now, gentlemen – no need to argue. There’s plenty of indictments to go around for every president – all in the name of fairness… And if it were up to me, I would make it happen.

            One day, I picture an America where liberal and conservative politicians, lobbyists and their followers serve life sentences sharing the same prison cells together where they can hold hands and sing kumbaya – all in the name of tolerance and inclusion.

            On that day, the taxpayers shall rejoice!

        • 0 avatar

          See if you can try to take your head out of your ass for just a moment and see the difference between massive geopolitical crimes of the past fifteen years (Invasion of Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine) and domestic enforcement of the rule of law.

          Fact: I. Lewis “Scooter” Libby was convicted by a court of law for perjury and obstruction of justice. He was later pardoned by President Bush.

          “A year and a half later, a jury would convict Libby of obstruction of justice and perjury in his grand jury testimony and making false statements to federal investigators about when and how he learned that Plame was a CIA agent.”

          Fact: Jeffery Skilling and Kenneth Lay were convicted for their crimes related to Enron, although Lay died before the verdict.

          “Skilling was convicted on 19 of 28 counts of securities fraud and wire fraud and acquitted on the remaining nine, including charges of insider trading. He was sentenced to 24 years, 4 months in prison, and cannot be released before serving less than 20 years, 4 months. In addition, he must pay $630 million to the government, which includes a $180 million fine”

          “Lay was convicted of all six counts of securities and wire fraud for which he had been tried, and could have faced a total sentence of up to 45 years in prison; however, he died of a heart attack on July 5, 2006, prior to sentencing. Accordingly, the judge vacated Lay’s conviction on October 17, 2006, since he died before he was sentenced and before all appeals could be exhausted”

          Fact: Bernie Madoff was prosecuted and sentenced to 150 years in a case which spanned the two recent administrations.

          “Alerted by his sons, federal authorities arrested Madoff on December 11, 2008. On March 12, 2009, Madoff pleaded guilty to 11 federal crimes and admitted to operating the largest private Ponzi scheme in history.”

          “On June 29, Judge Chin sentenced Madoff to 150 years in prison, as recommended by the prosecution. Chin said he had not received any mitigating letters from friends or family testifying to Madoff’s good deeds, describing that “the absence of such support is telling”.[183] Commentators noted that this was in contrast to other high-profile white collar trials such as that of Andrew Fastow, Jeffrey Skilling, and Bernard Ebbers who were known for their philanthropy and/or cooperation to help victims; however Madoff’s victims included several charities and foundations, and the only person that pleaded for mercy was defense lawyer Ira Sorkin”

          So I have already cited Solyndra, here are two other firms who took Dept of Energy loans and promptly folded:

          “In 2009 Henrik Fisker mentioned plans for another plug-in hybrid, a “high-volume vehicle for a lower price”, subject to getting a U.S. Department of Energy loan[19] to build about 100,000 vehicles annually in the United States.”

          “Fisker received a US$528.7 million conditional loan in September 2009 from the Department of Energy’s US$25 billion Advanced Technologies Vehicle Manufacturing Loan Program (ATVM).[24][25] A total of US$169.3 million is for engineering work with primarily USA suppliers to complete the Fisker Karma, design tools and equipment, and develop manufacturing processes”

          “In 2010, A123 received a US$249 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy for building battery production facilities. Approximately $129 million of the grant was used to build a 550 MWh battery plant in Livonia and another in Romulus.[2] An untapped $120 million grant was abandoned by A123 by May 2012.[3] The company laid off 125 workers in December 2011 as demand for partner Fisker’s automobiles had slackened.[4] A123 Systems had more than 3000 employees as of December 2012.[5]

          In August 2012, Chinese automotive components manufacturer Wanxiang Group agreed to invest up to $465 million to acquire as much as 80% of A123 Systems;[6] but the acquisition was not completed before A123 filed for bankruptcy. On October 16, 2012, A123 filed for bankruptcy protection under Chapter 11, Title 11, United States Code. On January 28, 2013, Wanxiang America purchased the preponderance of A123’s assets out of bankruptcy for $256.6M and organized A123Systems, LLC.”

          HHS Secretary Sebelius violates Hatch Act

          “Sebelius said, “I clearly made a mistake. I was not intending to use an official capacity to do a political event.” The OSC did not recommend any action be taken against the secretary.”


          “A few Internal Revenue Services employees are facing investigations. A Postal Service worker was dismissed this May because of it.”

          Holder caught in perjury, classified information leaked.

          “House Judiciary Republicans, in their letter, raise the possibility that Holder perjured himself by issuing an ironclad denial of any involvement in the investigation and potential prosecution of reporters. “The media reports and statements issued by the Department regarding the search warrants for Mr. Rosen’s emails appear to be at odds with your sworn testimony before the Committee,” they wrote. “We believe – and we hope you will agree – it is imperative that the Committee, the Congress and the American people be provided a full and accurate account of your involvement in and approval of these search warrants.””

          “The leak investigation sprang from Rosen’s report in 2009 that North Korea would respond to sanctions with more nuclear tests. That information was classified when Rosen reported it, leading to an FBI investigation to uncover Rosen’s source that quickly shifted focus to scrutinize Rosen himself.”

          Scooter Libby, jag off he may be, was convicted of perjury over his investigation into revealing classified information (naming Valerie Plame). Who is this Rosen and why is HE not in jail?

          Fast and Furious

          “On May 3, 2011, Attorney General Holder testified to the House Judiciary Committee that he did not know who approved Fast and Furious, but that it was being investigated.”

          Ok that’s his job…

          “During the June 12, 2012, Senate hearing, Eric Holder stated, “If you want to talk about Fast and Furious, I’m the Attorney General that put an end to the misguided tactics that were used in Fast and Furious. An Attorney General who I suppose you would hold in higher regard was briefed on these kinds of tactics in an operation called Wide Receiver and did nothing to stop them—nothing. Three hundred guns, at least, walked in that instance.””

          Oops, so not his fault. Ok.

          “On June 28, 2012, Holder became the first sitting member of the Cabinet of the United States to be held in criminal contempt of Congress by the House of Representatives for refusing to disclose internal Justice Department documents in response to a subpoena.”

          Wait, now you won’t share what you found? Why? Because you are guilty too?


          “In January 2014, the FBI told Fox News that its investigation had found no evidence so far warranting the filing of federal criminal charges in connection with the scandal, as it had not found any evidence of “enemy hunting”, and that the investigation continued.”

          Really? But no charges for tampering with evidence on the missing emails? Uh huh. Didn’t Scooter Libby get convicted and Bill fricking Clinton impeached on Obstruction of Justice charges? Did we forget how to choose that one on the menu of statutes?

          So why is it in these various scandals NOBODY is in jail? Serious question. Did we lose the rule of law?

        • 0 avatar

          > Dickhead Cheney

          This reminds me of a bumper sticker I saw on a beat up pickup (with an NRA member sticker, no less):

          “Dick Cheney…before he dicks you!”

    • 0 avatar

      “Hopefully it will be on the same day someone is indicted for Solyndra.”

      That someone should be Barrack Hussein Obama.

      • 0 avatar

        Well obviously every living president is guilty of something, but this is not a realistic outcome. Realistically the Dept of Energy official who refuted Emmanuel’s concerns and the board of Solyndra should be on a three to five year bit at the Graybar Motel. This isn’t that hard, there are thousands of statutes for a prosecutor to use and its not as if the defendants are not guilty and wouldn’t take a plea. The fact the FBI investigated and came up with nothing is curious, or perhaps they were ordered to seal what they found by the administration (most likely). Funny that the Bush administration prosecuted Enron and yet the Obama administration does not prosecute Solyndra (no I am not endorsing the Bush administration but it seems as if the rule of law was followed and now its an oops whats that).

        • 0 avatar

          A lot of dead presidents are guilty of something too. Both Lincoln and FDR played fast and loose with presidential authority. John Adams in the 19th century and Woodrow Wilson in the 20th had Sedition Acts at their disposal and used them. During Adams’ and Wilson’s terms, people were jailed for speaking contrariwise to government opinion.

  • avatar

    This would make a great First Person Shooter episode in Call of Duty.

    CoD: Dieselgate

  • avatar

    “happened on Friday, wasn’t reported until Sunday”


  • avatar

    Apparently during the police raid it was discovered that the programmer writing the cheats was a 13 year old from Denmark and there was a naked man sitting in a bean bag chair eating Cheetos watching him work.

  • avatar

    C’mon Volkswagen, keep pushing that “few rogue low level employees” theory.

  • avatar


  • avatar

    Volkswagen should return the favor and hire people to raid public officials’ offices in dead of night, confiscating any correspondence or equipment used to tie the raids to political campaigns. When a company has admitted wrong-doing and is cooperating with authorities, there is no need for raids of this type, unless there’s a political angle. The public has a need to know what their elected officials are up to, and the press has abdicated its responsibility.

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