Oliver Schmidt, the Volkswagen executive incarcerated since January when he tried to return to his native Germany after a Florida vacation, will remain in custody until his trial early next year for 11 felonies tied to the company’s emissions violations, a federal judge said. Schmidt, 48, appeared before Judge Sean Cox in U.S. District Court in Detroit for a hearing on his motion to be released on bond pending his trial. He has been behind bars since he was arrested Jan. 7 at Miami International Airport and charged for his alleged role in Volkswagen’s ongoing diesel emissions scandal.
A lawyer for Uber told a federal judge he intended to file a petition to compel arbitration in the Waymo trade secrets theft case, citing an agreement signed by a former Waymo employee who is at the heart of the case. Waymo, the self-driving division of technology giant Alphabet, sued ride services company Uber last month, alleging it stole proprietary trade secrets and used them to quickly scale up its autonomous vehicle program. In both parties' first appearance before U.S. District Judge William Alsup in San Francisco, Arturo Gonzalez, a lawyer for Uber, said an employment agreement signed by Anthony Levandowski when he worked at Waymo has a "very broad arbitration provision" that should be used.
he leaders of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Transportation said Wednesday they will revisit Obama-era standards on greenhouse gas emissions for 2022 to 2025 model cars and light trucks, a win for automakers that said the standards were too tough to meet.
The announcement is a rebuke to the Obama administration’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas pollution from the transportation sector and deal with climate change, and again shows the Trump administration’s commitment to easing regulatory obligations on industry.
As self-driving cars edge closer to street-legal status, technology companies don’t want to be left out.
Computer chipmaker Intel Corp. reached for its share Monday with the $15.3-billion purchase of Mobileye, a small Israeli company that creates vision systems for cars and trucks. The two will combine their expertise to develop self-driving systems for automakers, technologies that combine computer chips with sensors and software to make driverless cars possible.
Volkswagen pleaded guilty Friday to conspiracy and obstruction of justice in a brazen scheme to get around U.S. pollution rules on nearly 600,000 diesel vehicles by using software to suppress emissions of nitrogen oxide during tests.
The German automaker has agreed to pay $4.3 billion in civil and criminal penalties — the largest ever levied by the U.S. government against an automaker — although VW's total cost of the scandal has been pegged at about $21 billion, including a pledge to repair or buy back vehicles.
On February 28, 2017, in Vaquero v. Stoneledge Furniture LLC, a California Court of Appeal found that employers are required to separately calculate and pay compensation for rest periods for employees receiving commission based pay. The plaintiffs in Vaquero were commission-based salespeople at a furniture store. Each pay period, they received sales commissions plus, if necessary, a draw against future commissions bringing pay to at least $12.01 for each hour worked in the pay period. Their compensation agreement did not provide for separate compensation for non-sales time or for rest periods. The plaintiffs filed suit alleging failure to provide paid rest periods.
The Trump administration is expected to begin rolling back stringent federal regulations on vehicle pollution that contributes to global warming. The announcement, expected Tuesday, is a U-turn from Obama-era regulations on tailpipe emissions of carbon dioxide.
Volkswagen executive Oliver Schmidt will remain behind bars as an extreme flight risk even after not-guilty pleas were entered on his behalf during his arraignment Thursday in U.S. District Court in Detroit. Schmidt, 48, faces 11 felony counts in connection with VW’s nearly decade-long effort to subvert U.S. environmental regulations when it came to the company’s diesel-powered vehicles. If convicted, he could face up to 169 years in federal prison, prosecutors said in January.
Elon Musk is burning through cash and may need to raise more soon to produce the mass-market electric sedan Tesla Inc. is banking on to reach the mainstream consumer. A capital raise would provide more cushion to the smallest and youngest publicly held U.S. automaker, which has huge expenditures planned ahead of introducing the Model 3 sedan in July. Tesla burned through cash in the fourth quarter and expects to spend as much as $2.5 billion in the first half of the year before fielding its first mass-market car.
PSA Group will be a partner in a ride-sharing service set to begin in April at airports in San Francisco and Los Angeles, taking the first steps toward re-entering the North American market. TravelCar, a French company that offers peer-to-peer ride-sharing at airports and train stations in Europe, is launching the service after securing an investment of 15 million euros ($15.8 million) from PSA and MAIF, a French insurance company. Under TravelCar's business model, car owners can receive free parking in return for allowing their vehicle to be rented by travelers, at rates the company says are 50 percent lower than traditional car rentals.
ABOUT ARENT FOX LLP
Arent Fox LLP, founded in 1942, is internationally recognized in core practice areas where business and government intersect. With more than 350 lawyers, the firm provides strategic legal counsel and multidisciplinary solutions to clients that range from Fortune 500 corporations to trade associations. The firm has offices in Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, and Washington, DC.