VW’s shareholders seek $11 billion in damages over dieselgate

In a lawsuit aimed at Volkseagen, shareholders representing 1,670 claims, have sued the carmaker over inadequate disclosures; they have argued that if they would have known of dieselgate they would have the opportunity to sell or not buy VW’s shares.

On Monday, Europe’s biggest carmaker Volkswagen AG went to trial with investors seeking $10.6 billion (9.2 billion euros) in compensation related to its 2015 diesel pollution scandal.

Shareholders representing 1,670 claims have taken VW to court over the slide in its share prices due to the scandal which cost the carmaker 27.4 billion euros in penalties and fines so far.

At the Braunschweig higher regional court, Judge Christian Jaede is set to hear opening remarks at the trial. Monday’s hearing will essentially set the agenda and case priorities for the trial following which witnesses may be called.

Plantiffs have sued VW over its failure to inform shareholders about the financial impact of the scandal which came to light after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a “notice of violation” on Sept. 18, 2015.

Had institutional VW issued a disclosure on this earlier, they would have sold its shares earlier or would have not made purchases thereby avoiding losses on their shareholdings, stated plaintiffs in the lawsuit.

VW’s depreciated by 37% after the scandal came to light.

VW has admitted to systematic emissions cheating, but has denied any wrongdoing in matters of regulatory disclosure.

“This lawsuit is solely and exclusively about whether Volkswagen complied with its disclosure obligations toward shareholders and the capital markets,” said VW in a statement. “We are confident that this is the case.”

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