On Friday, U.S. federal prosecutors brought criminal charges against three Takata executives—Shinichi Tanaka, Hideo Nakajima and Tsuneo Chikaraishi—alleging that the three deceived automakers about defects in its airbags that they knew failed safety tests.
Takata is accused of engaging in a 15-year scheme to cheat its customers by getting them to buy defective air bags. There are 46 million recalled Takata inflators in 29 million vehicles in the U.S., the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said. More recalls are coming over the next three years, affecting as many as 69 million inflators in 42 million vehicles, the agency said.
The indictments aren’t the only bad news to hit the company that was, in 2015, the world’s second-largest airbag provider.