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Published: Sun, January 15, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Renault shares fall as emissions fraud probe opens

Renault shares fall as emissions fraud probe opens

France's consumer fraud agency, the DGCCRF, launched an inquiry into Renault's emission testing a year ago after Volkswagen (VLKAY) was found to have cheated tests of its diesel engines.

Renault, whose biggest shareholder is the French government with a 20 percent stake, said it hasn't received any official notification about the latest developments in the investigation, which French prosecutors announced in a brief statement Friday.

French authorities raided Renault company premises after Volkswagen was found to have used engine software to cheat on United States diesel emissions tests.

In a statement, Renault took note of the investigation but said its 'vehicles are not equipped with cheating software affecting anti-pollution systems'.

A source told Reuters news agency that three judges were looking into the matter. Whether the prosecutor's inquiry is followed by a trial is for the judges to decide.

Renault declined to comment when contacted by TheStreet.

Following a massive emissions scandal involving Germany's Volkswagen, independent French experts found dangerously high levels of emissions from diesel engines of several carmakers, including Renault.

Shares of Europe's third-largest automaker fell as much as 6 percent in Paris trading.

The shockwaves from Volkswagen's own emissions scandal are still reverberating around the global auto industry.

The Italian-American company assured that the issue shall be resolved by working with President-elect Donald Trump's administration. They slumped by more than 4% after news broke.

The cases have echoes of one against Volkswagen, which on Wednesday pleaded guilty to criminal conspiracy as part of an emissions-cheating scheme. The fines are the largest ever paid by a vehicle manufacturer in the US, while the ruling also includes criminal charges against six VW executives who face prison in the U.S.

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