January 15, 2020 / 9:02 AM / 10 days ago

CORRECTED-Polish watchdog fines Volkswagen over 'dieselgate' scandal

(Corrects story to clarify it is the biggest fine ever given for for violation of consumer rights, not the biggest for any issue, para 2)

WARSAW, Jan 15 (Reuters) - Poland’s consumer watchdog UOKiK said on Wednesday it was fining Volkswagen more than 120 million zlotys ($31.6 million) for misleading customers about the emissions of its vehicles.

The fine, the biggest ever given by the regulator for violation of consumer rights, is the latest chapter in a global emissions cheating scandal that has cost Volkswagen about 30 billion euros in fines, vehicle refits and legal costs, and also triggered a global backlash against diesel vehicles.

“False information in advertising materials caused misinformation - they referred to Volkswagen’s pro-ecological attitude, when in fact the cars were not environmentally friendly,” UOKiK president Marek Niechcial said in a statement.

Volkswagen in 2015 admitted to cheating U.S. emissions tests on diesel engines.

The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Wednesday. ($1 = 3.7933 zlotys) (Reporting by Alan Charlish; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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