In an article titled “Could GM be charged with murder?” Jim Heller, chair of Cozen O’Connor’s Products Liability Practice Group, discusses a defective ignition switch in millions of General Motors’ cars that has led to at least 13 deaths since 2001. The Department of Transportation has fined the automaker $35 million for inaction regarding the switches, and the Department of Justice may impose an even bigger fine on the automaker. Given that people died as a result of the defect, could the U.S. government opt to charge GM with murder too?
Jim offers his opinion by stating “that charging GM with manslaughter would not be a particularly effective strategy. This is probably better handled in the civil lawsuits.” He continues to say that there is “a lot of pressure on the DOJ to act not only [swiftly] but forcefully.” He expects that though no criminal charges will be filed, the fines will be significant.
To read the article, click here.