DETROIT (Reuters) - Volkswagen's (VOWG_p.DE) executive management was informed about the "existence, purpose and characteristics" of an emissions cheating device in July 2015, and chose not to disclose it to United States regulators, a court filing on Monday showed.
A complaint filed to the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan by the Federal Bureau of Investigation against VW at the end of last year accuses VW of deliberately misleading regulators about cheating pollution tests in the United States.
The complaint said VW employee Oliver Schmidt and other employees gave a presentation to VW's executive management on or about July 27, 2015.
"In the presentation, VW employees assured VW executive management that U.S. regulators were not aware of the defeat device," the complaint said.
"Rather than advocate for disclosure of the defeat device to U.S. regulators, VW executive management authorised its continued concealment."
Volkswagen said it could not comment on an ongoing legal matter.
VW admitted in September 2015 that it installed secret software that allowed U.S. vehicles to emit up to 40 times legally allowable pollution levels.
Schmidt was due to appear in court on Monday after he was arrested on charges of conspiracy to defraud the United States in connection with the automaker's emissions cheating scandal.
(This story corrects "management board" to "executive management" in first paragraph. Adds "2015" in seventh paragraph.)
Reporting by David Shepardson, Edward Taylor and Ilona Wissenbach; Editing by Georgina Prodhan and Adrian Croft