Former Porsche CEO free of criminal lawsuit image

Wendelin Wiedeking, the former Porsche CEO and also ex-Chief Financial Officer Holger Haerter have been absolved of charges of market manipulation in the failed attempt to take over Volkswagen AG.

According to a Stuttgart, Germany, court, the two former executives charged in December 2012 will be absolved of a criminal trial, but prosecutors can still appeal the ruling.

“The ruling is hardly a surprise,” the lawyers for both said. “It confirms the view of Mr Wiedeking and Mr Haerter that the allegations are thoroughly unfounded.”

The two former executives were indicted with the criminal charges after more than three years of investigations on claims that Porsche attempted to mislead its investors during the failed take over bid.

Porsche has been plagued by numerous trials and investigations after revealing in October 2008 it controlled Volkswagen Group through a 74.1% stake – partly through options – as it was seeking to acquire a 75% clean stake in a takeover plan.

Many hedge funds have numerous ongoing civil lawsuits against Porsche, seeking at least 5 billion euros ($6.9 billion) in compensation. The criminal lawsuit against both Wiedeking and Haerter could have aided the civil cases, by revealing more evidence on the takeover proceedings.

Via Automotive News Europe