S&C Obtains Appellate Ruling Affirming Dismissal of Claims Against Volkswagen Over EC Disclosures

March 28, 2022

Volkswagen AG and three current and former executives prevailed before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, which on March 15 affirmed the dismissal with prejudice of claims brought on behalf of a putative class of purchasers of Volkswagen American Depository Receipts. Plaintiffs alleged that statements in Volkswagen's Annual Reports from 2012 through 2016 violated U.S. securities laws based on Volkswagen's voluntary disclosure to the European Commission about potential anticompetitive conduct under European law.
The Second Circuit held that the plaintiffs had not adequately alleged how Volkswagen's purported conduct was unlawful or how this supposedly unlawful conduct occurred. The court also held that the district court did not abuse its discretion in dismissing the amended complaint with prejudice.
The lawsuit mirrored allegations brought in two private antitrust suits asserting that Volkswagen and its subsidiaries Audi and Porsche had been engaged in a “no arms race” conspiracy with two other German automakers to limit innovation in new vehicles. S&C obtained the dismissal with prejudice of the antitrust lawsuits for the three automakers.
The S&C team representing Volkswagen and the individual defendants included Robert Giuffra Jr., Suhana Han (who argued the appeal), Justin DeCamp, Jason Kornmehl, Stephanie Freudenberg, Aaron Wiltse and Ally Russell.