A Manhattan U.S. federal judge ruled GM and its law firm do not need to turn over additional secret documents to drivers hoping to show that the automaker intended to commit a crime or fraud by concealing defective ignition switches in their vehicles.
“Put simply, plaintiffs do not provide a factual basis for a good faith belief that the communications and work product they seek – let alone any particular communications or work product they seek – were made with the intent to further a crime or fraud,” U.S. judge Jesse Furman wrote.
Forman found no additional intent that GM had further intent to commit a crime through the documents, and stated the most important documents have already been released to drivers involved in ignition-switch cases.
“We’re pleased with the court’s ruling,” GM spokesman James Cain said. “The company did not conspire with King & Spalding to further any crime or fraud.”
The news follows GM’s announcement two months ago to pay $900 million to drop all criminal investigation and charges by the U.S. government.