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United States government indicts six high-ranking VW employees

The employees include heads of engineering teams and quality managers.

COLMA, CA - NOVEMBER 18: The Volkswagen logo is displayed at Serramonte Volkswagen on November 18, 2016 in Colma, California. Volkswagen announced plans to lay off 30,000 workers in an effort to boost profits in the wake of the recent emissions scandal. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Justin Sullivan, Getty Images

Earlier this week, the US government arrested a Volkswagen executive in connection to Dieselgate while he was on vacation in Miami. Now, it's indicted six other employees.

The US Department of Justice said today that six Volkswagen employees have been indicted in connection with the company's emissions scandal. Volkswagen did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

It was too difficult to Photoshop six headshots into the same picture.

Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

The employees are all higher-ranking members of the automaker's team. The six individuals in question include a head of brand development, a head of engine development, an engineering team leader, two former quality managers and a former environment and engineering office manager.

Today's an interesting day for Volkswagen. The automaker earlier today announced details of its settlement with the US government that covers multiple civil and criminal infractions. It will pay $4.5 billion and plead guilty to criminal misconduct related to its Dieselgate scandal.

Dieselgate began back in 2015, when it was discovered that Volkswagen hid illegal software in its 2.0-liter diesel engines, and had for years. The software could curb emissions output during lab testing sessions, but once the vehicles hit the road, they would pollute well in excess of legal limits. Governments around the world, including the US, pledged to change their testing methods in the future, including placing additional stress on real-world testing.