VW seeks damages from ex-managers for emissions scandal: report

FILE PHOTO: A car with the Volkswagen VW logo badge is seen on display at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan, U.S., January 16, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

BERLIN (Reuters) - Volkswagen VOWG_p.DE is seeking damages from former managers, who were dismissed for their roles in the diesel emissions scandal that has cost the German automaker as much as $30 billion, the Handelsblatt newspaper reported on Thursday.

Volkswagen filed the claims for damages as part of labor court disputes at the end of last year, the newspaper said, without giving details of which former employees it had targeted or how high the total damages claims might be.

Volkswagen declined to comment on the report.

Handelsblatt said Volkswagen has fired six managers since it admitted in 2015 to illegally installing software in U.S. vehicles for years to evade emissions standards. It said all six were fighting their dismissals.

Volkswagen pleaded guilty in 2017 as part of a $4.3 billion U.S. settlement. In total, nine people have been charged in the diesel emissions scandal and two former VW executives have pleaded guilty and been sentenced to prison terms.

Handelsblatt said Volkswagen was seeking to recover a large part of the 4 million euros ($4.60 million) the company paid for the defense of one of the jailed former executives, Oliver Schmidt, who was handed a seven year prison sentence in 2017.

The newspaper cited Schmidt’s lawyer as saying his client would fight the move by Volkswagen.

Reporting by Jan Schwartz, writing by Emma Thomasson. Editing by Jane Merriman