Justice Department finds criminal wrongdoing in GM ignition switch defect: NYT

A recalled Chevy Cobalt ignition switch is seen at Raymond Chevrolet in Antioch, Illinois, July 17, 2014. REUTERS/John Gress

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. Justice Department investigators have identified criminal wrongdoing in General Motors Co's GM.N failure to disclose a defective ignition switch, and they are negotiating what is expected to be a record penalty, the New York Times reported on Friday.

Citing people briefed on the inquiry, the Times said a settlement could be reached as soon as this summer. The final number is still being negotiated, but it is expected to exceed the $1.2 billion paid last year by Toyota for concealing unintended acceleration problems, according to the newspaper.

Reporting by Eric Beech; Editing by Sandra Maler