Dimitrios P. Biller, the former manager of legal counsel for Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc., alleges company executives forced him to conceal evidence in numerous car rollover cases over the past 20 years, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Biller, who resigned in September of 2007, said Toyota executives forced him, in multiple instances, to illegally withhold information from opposing attorneys. They also required him to destroy data which proved Toyota’s roofs were substandard in more than 300 car accident cases.
The victims in these cases were seriously injured or killed due to crushed roofs and filed lawsuits claiming a direct connection to Toyota’s faulty roofs and their injuries or death.
This isn’t the first time a car company has been accused of concealing evidence in litigation. In 2001, the Michigan Supreme Court supported a ruling which imposed a $547,000 fine on Ford Motor Company for withholding test data that indicated seat belt failure in a lawsuit.
As an injury lawyer who’s represented clients severely hurt in car accidents, this issue is extremely important to me. The idea that an attorney representing a company would intentionally conceal and destroy evidence is distressing and we need to ensure Mr. Biller’s allegations are fully vetted.
Toyota released a statement which said Biller’s statements were “inaccurate and misleading.” The company is painting him as a disgruntled employee looking for retaliation after being asked to leave the company.