The family of a victim involved in a fatal 2004 accident in a Saturn Ion has filed a lawsuit against General Motors claiming the automaker committed fraud while settling claims over the crash, Reuters reports.
Mikale Erickson was killed when the Saturn Ion he was a passenger in crashed into a tree near Tyler, Texas. Erickson’s family originally settled their claims in 2008, but had no knowledge of a potential defect with the vehicle at the time. Now, the family is alleging GM deliberately concealed the defect during the trials.
Erickson’s fiancé, Candice Anderson, was charged with criminally negligent homicide for the accident because “there was no clear explanation” at the time of the accident why the Ion crashed, the filing said. The lawsuit is seeking damages for Anderson and the Erickson family.
GM allowed Candice Anderson to believe that she was solely responsible for causing the death of her fiancee, Gene Mikale Erickson, when GM had knowledge that would exculpate her,” according to the lawsuit filing.
The suit is just a drop in the bucket for GM, who is the subject of 85 other lawsuits by owners who claim their vehicles lost value as a result of the recall. The automaker is also facing 18 lawsuits from representatives of those who were injured or killed in accidents caused by the faulty ignition switch.
General Motors committed fraud while settling claims over a 2004 accident that left one man dead and his fiancee pleading guilty to a crime, the victim’s family said in a lawsuit seeking to reopen the case.