Poland's Office of Competition and Consumer Protection fined Volkswagen AG's Polish unit 120 million zlotys over the carmaker's "dieselgate" emissions scandal.
The regulator, or UOKiK, said it collected more than 5,000 pages of evidence during its investigation that began in late 2016. Under its probe, the UOKiK found that the carmaker falsified information about its Volkswagen brand, Seat, Skoda and Audi cars being eco-friendly and meeting nitrogen oxide emissions requirements in the country. It added that Volkswagen misled customers for eight years, in 2008 through January 2016.
UOKiK said it also interviewed 13 Volkswagen car dealers who said the company directed them to reject consumer complaints about nitrogen oxide emissions.
"There were no settlement proposals from the company during the proceedings. The company acted to the detriment of consumers because it made unethical recommendations that dealers should not accept legitimate consumer complaints," UOKiK President Marek Niechciał said in a statement.
The UOKiK's decision is not final and can be appealed in court.
In an emailed statement to S&P Global Market Intelligence, Volkswagen said the company does not see any legal grounds for the fine.
"We will analyze the decision as soon as we receive it to determine further actions," the automaker said.
The development comes after Volkswagen said Jan. 2 that it entered into settlement talks with the Federation of German Consumer Organisations over a mass lawsuit related to alleged emissions manipulation.
As of Jan. 14, US$1 was equivalent to 3.79 Polish zlotys.