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Volkswagen will reportedly face US criminal charges in Dieselgate

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Volkswagen To Announce Results for 2006 Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images

Volkswagen will face federal criminal charges in the US for its diesel emissions scandal, possibly resulting in "significant financial penalties," according to a report in The Wall Street Journal. Volkswagen and Department of Justice prosecutors are said to be in negotiations to settle the case before the end of the year, though that timing isn’t firm.

The prosecutors are said to be looking to decide if they should seek a guilty plea to criminal charges from Volkswagen or if the DoJ will set up a "deferred prosecution agreement" where charges could be dismissed if the company adheres to settlement terms.

In June, Volkswagen reached a $14.7 billion deal with federal regulators over Dieselgate, including the offer of buybacks for thousands of affected vehicles, and a few weeks later was sued by several US states for violating a variety of state environmental statutes. It’s likely that the various criminal charges and civil lawsuits and settlements will continue for quite some time, costing the German automaker potentially tens of billions of dollars.