In October 2014, the MessaLaw Blog posted on the massive recall of Japanese made airbags that were linked to at least eleven deaths and hundreds of injuries. On February 27, 2017, nearly three years after the recall, Takata Corporation has pleaded guilty in a criminal case to one count of wire fraud and will pay $1 billion in restitution and fines for concealing a defect that ended up killing eleven people and injuring so many others.
The defect Takata concealed for over a decade was in the ammonium-nitrate based inflators, which caused the airbags to inflate with far too much force. As a result, metal shards from exploding pieces of the car were propelled into the cabin of the car.
Takata takes responsibility
In a federal courtroom in Detroit, Michigan, Takata’s finance chief, Yoichuro Nomura, entered a guilty plea on behalf of the company, calling the actions of certain Takata employees, “deeply inappropriate.”
The $1 billion penalty includes $850 million in restitution to car companies (who had to recall and repair over 11 million vehicles after the defective airbags were recalled), $125 million for victims and their families, and a $25 million criminal penalty. U.S. District Judge Caram Steeh noted that the penalty could have been as high as $1.5 billion, but such a sum would likely put the company out of business. He also noted that while, “the company’s destruction would be fair,” it wouldn’t help victims get paid.
New Jersey and Philadelphia Personal Injury Attorneys
The Philadelphia personal injury attorneys at Messa & Associates are experienced at handling personal injury cases involving serious injuries resulting from defective products and motor vehicle accidents. Our extremely skilled team of personal injury attorneys and medical experts is dedicated to ensuring you receive proper compensation for your personal injuries. If you have been injured by a defective product, a recalled motor vehicle, or have endured any other type of personal injury, contact the personal injury attorneys of Messa & Associates for a free consultation. Call toll free at 1-877-MessaLaw, or submit a free online inquiry.