20 August 2020
Fox Williams LLP investigating litigation against Mercedes following US settlements totalling $2.2 billion for dirty diesel emissions fraud
London law firm, Fox Williams, pursuing possible dirty diesel emissions claims for Mercedes owners in England and Wales in collaboration with US law firm, Hagens Berman, which spearheaded an investigation and consumer group action lawsuit leading to more than $700 million for US Mercedes owners.
Fox Williams LLP, in collaboration with US class-action law firm Hagens Berman, is investigating possible claims against Mercedes in England and Wales, with a view to bringing group action litigation for suspected dirty diesel emissions fraud in Mercedes’ line of BlueTEC diesel vehicles, which are believed to pollute at illegal levels resulting in economic and environmental damage.
It is estimated that up to 1.2 million potential claimants owning (or having owned) impacted vehicles in England and Wales are affected, based on Mercedes selling more than 600,000 impacted vehicles here between 2008 and 2018. This includes private owners and businesses, such as fleet operators and hire car companies.
According to Hagens Berman’s investigations, Mercedes programmed its BlueTEC vehicles to release illegally high, dangerous levels of NOx emissions via a defeat device similar to the one used by Volkswagen. This defeat device turned off or limited emissions reductions during real-world driving conditions but not during vehicle emissions tests.
Today’s announcement follows the news last Thursday (13 August) that the US investigation against Mercedes has culminated in a $2.2 billion agreement in principle with the US Department of Justice, Environmental Protection Agency and others including consumers. Hagens Berman’s claim, bolstered by its independent testing and research, will return $700 million or more to US owners of affected Mercedes dirty diesel BlueTEC vehicles.
The size of these settlements in the US (with Mercedes’ parent company, Daimler AG) is, in our opinion, a clear indication that Mercedes-Benz and Daimler have been selling dirty diesel-fuelled cars and vans in the US for many years. The evidence strongly suggests that Daimler and Mercedes have been involved in similar practices in England and Wales. Fox Williams is collaborating with Hagens Berman, the firm that led the successful Dieselgate claims against both Volkswagen and Mercedes in the US, to seek to hold these companies to account in England and Wales for the alleged environmental damage and economic disadvantage which these dirty diesels have caused their customers.
Mercedes owners and lessees in England and Wales who may have dirty diesel emissions claims
Certain of the following Mercedes models powered by BlueTEC diesel-fuelled engines and sold from 2008 up to 2018 are affected by the alleged unlawful, unfair, deceptive and otherwise defective emission controls utilised by Mercedes: A-Class, B-Class, C-Class, Citan, CLA, CLS, E-Class, GL-Class, GLA-Class, GLC-Class, GLE-Class, GLS, M-Class, S-Class, SLK, Sprinter, V-Class, and Vito (however, additional models are also likely emitting dirty diesel emissions). These models include passenger and commercial vehicles and vans, such as people movers, shuttles and taxis.
We believe that Mercedes started committing this alleged fraud in about 2008 and continued for some 10 years.
Fox Williams is investigating claims for business and private owners and lessees of these models in England and Wales.
Fleet owners, private owners and lessees who are unsure if their Mercedes vehicle is affected by the dirty diesel technology, can contact Fox Williams at www.mercedes-dieselclaims.co.uk.
Andrew Hill, the Fox Williams partner who is leading this action, comments: “Like many members of the general public, I have been shocked at the allegations of deception and fraud made against some of the world’s largest and most prestigious automotive manufacturers, including Mercedes-Benz. We believe business and private owners in England and Wales will very likely have good claims for the damage caused to them from unwittingly owning or leasing dirty diesels. We are delighted to be collaborating with the team at Hagens Berman, who have been at the forefront of bringing the claims against VW and Mercedes in the US. Hagens Berman will bring to Fox Williams’ case years of in-depth scientific evidence and legal experience from their cases in the US, which will be highly relevant in England, together with their experience of obtaining a successful multi-million dollar settlement from Mercedes-Benz and Daimler.
“As with our securities litigation practice, we see an opportunity to use the group action litigation legal framework which exists here for claimants to hold major corporations to account for their actions, sitting alongside any public enforcement action which regulators in this jurisdiction may choose to take. Hagens Berman has a similar approach and that’s why our collaboration will prove highly effective for those impacted by this apparent fraud this side of the pond.”
Mercedes owners interested in joining our possible claim should be aware that it will be conducted on a no-win, no-fee basis, meaning that there will be no out-of-pocket cost to sign up to or participate. More information can be found at: www.mercedes-dieselclaims.co.uk.
US lawsuit serves as “sparkplug” for further claims and litigation in England and Wales
“We’re pleased to see that the US Department of Justice’s investigation, which was spurred by the claim which we brought and our independent studies of Mercedes’ BlueTEC vehicles, will culminate in a just punishment for Mercedes’ deception,” said Steve W. Berman, co-founder and managing partner of Hagens Berman. “It is our belief that our investigation and lawsuit served as the sparkplug for the DOJ’s case and its conclusion of a US$1.5 billion agreement, and we’re hopeful that owners in England and Wales who have been deceived by Mercedes will also be able to obtain compensation. We’re pleased to be collaborating with Fox Williams to help them help those affected by dirty diesel emissions fraud.”
The evidence suggests that Mercedes was committing the same deception in England and Wales, and Mercedes has already been the subject of regulatory sanction and large fines in the EU for using the defeat devices in the cars it was selling in Europe.
If you own a Mercedes BlueTEC vehicle or fleet of affected vehicles, find out more about your rights against Mercedes.
NOTES TO EDITORS
About Fox Williams
Fox Williams is a leading London City law firm known for its ambition, great culture and good sense. The litigation team is recognised for its independent market position as well as for the quality of its work. The firm’s litigation lawyers advise on a wide range of disputes, employing legal strategies that minimise the risks and realistically assess the potential rewards for clients. Fox Williams has considerable experience in bringing civil fraud claims, and of cutting-edge, high-value group action litigation for institutional investors and shareholders of wrong-doing public companies. For more information, see www.foxwilliams.com
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About Hagens Berman
Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP is one of the largest and most renowned plaintiff-side group action law firms in the United States. The firm’s tenacious advocacy for plaintiffs has earned it numerous national accolades, including “Most Feared Plaintiff’s Firm,” and consistent rankings among a handful of elite plaintiffs’ law firms. More about our law firm and its successes can be found at www.hbsslaw.com. Follow the firm for updates and news at @ClassActionLaw.
Hagens Berman originally filed its dirty diesel emissions-cheating litigation against Mercedes in the US on 25 February 2016, and Hagens Berman was one of the lead firms that worked to achieve the US$14.7 billion Volkswagen Dieselgate settlement in 2016 (having been the first firm to file suit against Volkswagen in that matter). The firm has also pioneered emissions-cheating litigation against Audi, BMW, Fiat Chrysler, Ford and General Motors for affected consumers, and conducted independent research and testing in each case.
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