March 10, 2003

SUVs - Suddenly Upside-down Vehicles: New Fraud Rulings Hit Ford, EWG Seeks Criminal Probe

A pair of court rulings in the last month that reopen SUV rollover cases against Ford Motor Company spell serious legal problems for the automaker. Citing these and earlier court rulings, the Environmental Working Group has petitioned the U.S. Department of Justice to conduct an unprecedented criminal probe of Ford’s pattern and practice of willfully concealing safety-related defect data from courts, federal regulators and consumers.

“With this ruling, Ford is sailing into the perfect legal storm of consequences for lying in court and bribing a witness. For that matter, who’s going to believe them now when they tell consumers they won’t give us higher mileage SUVs because they’re too worried about customer safety?” said EWG General Counsel Heather White.

Criminal statutes

DOJ Petition Exhibits

  • Exhibit A — West Virginia Federal Court Fraud Ruling
  • Exhibit B — South Carolina Supreme Court Motion for New Trial Ruling
  • “In Ford's Favor” Bickerstaff Letter
  • Bronco II Track Width Issues Memo
  • Exhibit C — South Carolina Appeals Court Motion for New Trial Ruling
  • Exhibit D — Ohio Court Fraud Ruling
  • Exhibit E — Indiana Court "Utter Indifference" Ruling
  • Exhibit F — NHTSA "Plain English Letter"
  • Exhibit G — Illinois Federal Court Sanction Ruling
  • Exhibit H — Econoline Van ADAMS Rollover Affidavit
  • Exhibit I — Econoline Van On-Road Rollover Deposition
  • Exhibit J — Michigan Court Default Judgment
  • Exhibit K — Michigan Court $546,836 Sanction Ruling
  • Exhibit L — Dallas City Attorney Crown Vic Lawsuit Release
  • Exhibit M — Louisiana Attorney General Moratorium on Crown Vics