The director of the EPA’s Air Enforcement division had to recuse himself from participating as the federal government moved against the automobile manufacturer.
Philip Brooks, the chief enforcement director, owns a VW car that was affected by the scandal. His coming clean that he owned a 2015 Audi A3 diesel vehicle initiated an ethics process with the agency. This led to Brooks recusing himself from any involvement against Volkswagen for nearly two months.
However, the EPA would eventually clear Brooks from being able to go back to working on the case.
Initially, there were some concerns that Brooks’ ownership of an affected VW vehicle would cause a conflict of interest. The conflict of interest came into concern because Brooks could potentially participate in class-action lawsuits against Volkswagen.
Brooks was the one who raised the question of the possible conflict of interest. He reported owning the vehicle on October 9th. However, Brooks had previously signed a violation notice against Volkswagen in September.
According to the waiver that Brooks received allowing him to continue to investigate and be involved in the case, he will not take part in any class-action lawsuits against the manufacturer.
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