DaimlerChrysler fires 2 amid probe in Germany

March 10, 2005|By BLOOMBERG NEWS

STUTTGART, Germany - DaimlerChrysler AG said yesterday that it has fired two Mercedes Car Group executives and is investigating others concerning "irregularities" at the German sales division.

The Stuttgart prosecutor's office said it is investigating DaimlerChrysler employees for possible breach of trust.

The automaker said March 1 that it had replaced Juergen Fahr, head of German sales for Mercedes Car Group and the Maybach brand. A Daimler- Chrysler spokeswoman, Ursula Mertzig, said yesterday that Fahr and Walter Missing, head of the Mercedes office in Hamburg, had been fired.

"To my very best knowledge, what we're talking about in individual cases some people were a little bit confused about what is theirs and what is the company's, and this led to those investigations and clarifications and consequences," Dieter Zetsche, a member of the DaimlerChrysler board of management and head of the company's Chrysler division, said yesterday.

"We received anonymous tips pointing to irregularities in various areas of DaimlerChrysler's sales organization in Germany," Mertzig said yesterday. The tips, which included other DaimlerChrysler employees, are being investigated by the corporate auditing and security divisions, she said.

Shares of DaimlerChrysler lost 27 cents to close at $46.19 on the New York Stock Exchange. The company's stock in Frankfurt fell 1 euro cent to 34.85 euros.

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