What caused Renault to start a probe and fire three of its executives was information on industrial espionage that the carmaker paid 250,000 euros ($347,200) to acquire, according to a Reuters interview of Renault's lawyer Jean Reinhart last Wednesday. The lawyer said that Renault doesn’t know the identity of the person who sold the information.
In January, Renault dismissed three officials and filed a legal complaint for supposedly spying on its electric vehicle program.
However, Renault has recently admitted that it may have been tricked says Autonews. Renault has already asked its two security managers, the only ones who know the informant, to provide details to French police.
Reinhart had also confirmed that Renault paid 250,000 euros for the information, likely to an intermediary who had passed on all or part of it to the informant.
Reports from French media reveal that the two had refused to reveal the person's name. According to a police source, France's DCRI domestic intelligence agency, which is investigating the matter, had repeatedly interviewed them in recent days.
In January, Renault asked all of its employees to give their full cooperation to the investigators.