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Prosecutors seek arrest warrant for ex-VW Korea chief

July 28, 2016 - 10:19 By Ahn Sung-mi
[THE INVESTOR] Prosecutors on July 27 filed for an arrest warrant for Park Dong-hoon, Volkswagen Korea’s former chief executive officer, over the German automaker’s emission rigging scandal.

Park has been charged with fabrication of private documents, obstruction of justice and violation of the Clean Air Conservation Act.

The 63-year-old headed the Korean unit from its initiation in 2005 to 2013 before moving to Renault Samsung Motors as sales chief. He took helm of the Korean unit of France’s Renault Group in April. 

Former CEO of Volkswagen Korea Park Dong-hoon now heads Renault Samsung Motors as chief executive. / The Investor

Prosecutors believe that Park sold emissions-rigged Tiguan crossovers for two years, from July 2011 to August 2013, even though he was aware that the German head office changed the software of the cars to cheat on emissions level.

The cars, which are equipped with Euro 5 EA189 diesel engines, sold more than 120,000 units here.

He is also suspected of manipulating emissions and noise level tests documents from August 2010 to February 2015 to secure approval from Korea’s state-run agency to be eligible to import.

During the investigation, Park denied the allegation, saying he was unaware of the emission rigging. However, based on email transactions between the local unit and the German headquarters, the prosecutors are certain of Park’s involvement.

The Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office will decide at 10:30 a.m. on July 29 whether it will approve the arrest warrant.

The prosecutors are also planning on summoning Johannes Tamer, CEO of Audi Volkswagen Korea, who is suspected of importing emission rigged cars to Korea and manipulating documents to the Korean government.

By Ahn Sung-mi (