German carmaker Volkswagen asked for a six-month delay at the start of its ‘US Dieselgate’ process after an attorney for the plaintiffs could be seen in a new Netflix documentary making a Nazi reference.
Representatives for Volkswagen's US subsidiary filed a petition to a Virginia court asking for a delay of a minimum of six months as they fear the release of the new Netflix documentary series "Dirty Money" which features an "inflammatory" statement by the car buyers' lawyer which will influence the jury too much.
In the opening episode of "Dirty Money," which deals with numerous corporate scandals such as the Volkswagen emissions scandal, the lawyer Michael Melkersen can be seen commenting on recent revelations about Volkswagen's animal testing (more specifically on exposing monkeys to toxic diesel fumes).
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Volkswagen?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Volkswagen</a><br><br>10 Monkeys and a Beetle: Inside VW’s Campaign for ‘Clean Diesel’ <a href="https://t.co/7FdfWe1nAp">https://t.co/7FdfWe1nAp</a> <a href="https://t.co/lfy5Z4MS9v">pic.twitter.com/lfy5Z4MS9v</a></p>— Mick (@MickClm) <a href="https://twitter.com/MickClm/status/957597657215766528?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">January 28, 2018</a></blockquote>
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Then, just before a picture of Adolf Hitler appears on the screen, Mr. Melkersen says: "One cannot help but think back throughout history of another series of events involving individuals being gassed by a person who was actually at the opening of the very first Volkswagen factory."
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For this reason, Volkswagen's legal representatives claimed that "pre-trial publicity has connected the German-based company directly with Hitler and the Holocaust," which could make juries biased and eventually prevent a fair trial for the German company.
Mr. Melkersen said the filing was "hogwash."
"This is another tactic to postpone their day of reckoning."