PHOTO: Multiple senior managers at VW have been advised not to travel to the U.S. because of potential arrest. (Photo via Flickr/Automobile Italia)
Citing legal advisers and company sources, Reuters reported Friday that several senior Volkswagen managers have received guidance not to travel to the U.S.
One anonymous senior manager at VW stopped short of calling it a "travel warning," according to Reuters.
The advice comes after six current and former managers of the German automaker were indicted for their role in the company's diesel emissions scandal that involved nearly 600,000 vehicles in the U.S. over the course of 10 years. VW admitted to installing software on diesel vehicles that cheated emissions tests and later lying about it to regulators.
This past Saturday, Oliver Schmidt, former general manager of the Engineering and Environmental Office for VW of America, was arrested at Miami International Airport on charges of conspiracy to defraud the U.S. to commit wire fraud and violate the Clean Air Act.
Schmidt, who was denied his request for bail Thursday, was among the managers encouraged not to leave Germany, a legal source told Reuters.
While German citizens can be extradited to other European Union countries or an international court, they must leave Germany in order to risk being extradited to the U.S. from another country.
On Wednesday, VW pleaded guilty and agreed to pay a record $4.3 billion in a settlement with the Justice Department. The company will pay $2.8 billion in criminal penalties and $1.5 billion in civil claims, the DOJ confirmed.
According to Reuters, only one VW board member traveled to the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this week.