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Second GM Exec Linked to Ignition Recall Retires

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Tina Robinson3 years ago

General Motors has announced the executive engineer Jim Frederico, 58, has retired from the company to pursue other interests. Federico was the companys chief engineer for small cars and electric vehicles and is the second executive with ties to the GM ignition recall to suddenly retire.

GM declined to comment as to whether his decision to retire was connected to an internal investigation being conducted by former U.S. attorney Anton Valukas.

Federico's Worked with Recalled Vehicles

Federico was part of a team that led an investigation in July 2012 into why older compact cars such as the Saturn Ion and Chevrolet Cobalt had issues with engine stalling but not in later model years.

His name is also listed on legal depositions connected with a wrongful death lawsuit filed in Georgia last year. GM settled the suit out of court before Federico was called to testify.

Two GM Engineers Placed on Unpaid Leave

Last month, engineering executive John Calabrese also retired unexpectedly after over 33 years with the automaker. Calabrese had been in charge of vehicle engineering at the same time as the 2012 investigation.

GM also placed two engineers, Ray DeGiorgio and Gary Altman, on unpaid leave in April as part of the company’s internal investigation. Documents released as part of a Congressional investigation into the recall showed that DeGiorgio had approved of a switch redesign without issuing a new part number.

GM Compensation Fund

In addition to various investigations and inquiries into why GM delayed recalling the defective vehicles, the company has been named in numerous lawsuits from victims and their families seeking compensation.

Although GM has acknowledged 13 deaths connected to the switches, lawyers for plaintiffs believe the number of deaths and injuries to be much higher.

Last week, GM attorney Ken Feinberg met with Thomas J. Henry and other lawyers to discuss a possible GM fund to compensate victims of the faulty ignition switches. Victims say their GM vehicles stalled, experienced brake failure, or other steering defects that led to crashes and serious injuries. 


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