Shikha Dalmia on DOJ's Growing Criminalization of the Car Business


Boy and his Cars
Philippe Put / Foter / CC BY-NC

According to the New York Times, the Justice Department is gearing up to slap General Motors with a record fine for "criminal wrongdoing" in its SwitchGate debacle. If NYT is to be believed, these fines will dwarf even the billion-dollar penalty that Toyota was forced to cough up for its accelerating cars.

This might seem like rough justice for GM given that in addition to the cash, it also received a liability shield as part of its bailout package that has severely limited what its victims can collect in damages from it. But where will this money go? Not to victims or GM owners, actually. It'll go into DOJ's notorious asset forfeiture fund where it keeps its drug-raid loot, often collected from people never accused of a drug crime.

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