Volkswagen Hires Star U.S. Attorney Kenneth Feinberg

WASHINGTON (dpa/TNS) -

Embattled German automaker Volkswagen on Thursday announced it had hired prominent U.S. attorney Kenneth Feinberg, a veteran of many high-profile cases, to represent the company in its diesel-emissions scandal.

“His extensive experience in handling such complex matters will help to guide us as we move forward to make things right with our customers,” Michael Horn, head of VW in the United States, in a statement.

Feinberg, 70, will oversee the creation and administration of a program to address claims related to VW’s 2- and 3-liter diesel vehicles revealed to be carrying software to manipulate emissions.

Feinberg is an internationally recognized expert on compensation matters. He handled the compensation fund for the victims of the 9/11 terror attacks as well as claims following BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. He was most recently involved in administering General Motors’ compensation fund for victims of accidents caused by defective ignition switches.

VW is preparing the recall of millions of its diesel vehicles due to the manipulative software, and in the U.S. it faces millions of dollars in lawsuits.

The German newspaper Handelsblatt reported Thursday that electric-car magnate Elon Musk and other entrepreneurs sent a letter to U.S. authorities suggesting VW be required to build electric vehicles as part of its settlement for emissions trickery.