Toyota Agrees to Pay $1.2 Billion to End Criminal Investigation

A federal judge has approved a deal that will cost Toyota $1.2 Billion. The deal will officially put an end to the United State Attorney General probe into Toyota's attempt to hide safety defects. The $1.2 Billion marks the single largest criminal penalty ever imposed on an automaker in the United States.

Toyota recalled millions of vehicles worldwide following instances of vehicles accelerating on their own. Despite the initial recall of eight model vehicles, Toyota knew the problem was more widespread. It wasn't until years later that Toyota recalled some of the most frequent offending vehicles.

The U.S. Attorney General said the department's investigation found that Toyota concealed information about defects that put lives at risk. As part of the settlement, Toyota admits wrongdoing and must submit to an independent review of its safety process.

Between the criminal fine and settlement payouts in lawsuits brought by car owners, Toyota has paid almost $3 Billion as a result of their dishonesty and wrongdoing.