WASHINGTON (Bloomberg) -- U.S. lawmakers are demanding documents and a briefing from Volkswagen and the Environmental Protection Agency as part of an investigation into the automaker’s admission that it cheated on emissions tests.
The request by the House Energy and Commerce Committee follows an announcement last week that the panel will convene a hearing on revelations that VW rigged its 11 million diesel vehicles over seven years to evade emissions testing.
The incident, which forced the resignation of VW’s chief executive officer Martin Winterkorn last week, is also being investigated by the U.S. Justice Department, the attorneys general of at least 27 states and German prosecutors.
The House committee sent letters Tuesday asking the agency and carmaker for a timeline of events related to the company’s violations as well as communications between the two. The letters, signed by the top-ranking committee members of both parties, gave VW an Oct. 13 deadline to turn over the material and asked both entities to brief the committees staff by Friday.
Committee Chairman Fred Upton, a Michigan Republican, said in a statement that “it seems Volkswagen had a dirty little secret, and it’s not just consumers who are feeling betrayed.”
The letters ask for all “documents, including communications, relating to compliance with the Clean Air Act, EPA emissions standards and regulations, or testing of diesel emissions for all make and model year vehicles associated with the alleged violations.”
“We must be sure that the EPA has the tools necessary to enforce these policies and also detect any fraud that may be occurring,” New Jersey Representative Frank Pallone Jr., the ranking Democrat, said in the committee’s press release.