GM will pay $900 million to settle criminal charges over deadly ignition switch
NEW YORK (AP) — General Motors agreed to pay $900 million to fend off criminal prosecution over the deadly ignition-switch scandal, striking a deal that brought criticism down on the Justice Department for not bringing charges against individual employees.
The switches, which can slip out of the "run" position and cut off the engine, have been linked to at least 169 deaths.
Despite evidence that GM's legal and engineering staffs concealed the problem for nearly a decade, no employees were charged Thursday, though U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said the investigation is still going on.
Also Thursday, GM announced it will spend $575 million to settle the majority of the civil lawsuits filed over the scandal.
Under the deal with prosecutors, an independent monitor will be appointed to oversee GM's handling of safety problems. Two charges drawn up against GM — wire fraud and scheming to conceal information from government regulators — will be dropped after three years if the automaker cooperates fully.
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Posted on Fri, September 18, 2015
by Associated Press