German court orders a Volkswagen investor to pay damages for disclosure violations

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A German court ordered Porsche Automobil Holding SE to pay shareholders 47.2 million euros ($53.8 million) in compensation for breaching disclosure rules over an emissions scandal at its major investment Volkswagen.

Shareholders who held Porsche SE stock from May 23, 2014, and September 22, 2015, were entitled to be compensated for the share costs reduces caused by Volkswagen’s cheating of U.S. diesel emissions tests, the Stuttgart court stated.

Porsche SE, which controls a 30.8 percent stake in VW and 52 percent of voting rights at the automaker, stated it would appeal the ruling and that it was sure that a higher court would overturn the lower court’s findings.

“Porsche SE is convinced that the lawsuits have no merit,” it stated.

Porsche SE shareholders sued the firm for failing to inform its investors in a timely manner about the automaker’s diesel emissions cheating, which has cost company over 27 billion euros in fines and vehicle refits.

At the time U.S. regulators discovered VW using illegal software to manipulate diesel engine tests, the automaker was headed by Martin Winterkorn, who was also CEO of Porsche SE.

Law firm Nieding & Barth stated the pension fund for the city of Wolverhampton in central England was awarded 3.2 million euros in damages by the Stuttgart court.

Law firm TILP stated Porsche SE was asked to pay 44 million euros to other shareholders.

The verdict is not enforceable as of now, given Porsche SE’s right to appeal, TILP stated.

VW is also being sued by investors for supposedly violating disclosure violations, which the company rejects.

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