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By Reuters

Volkswagen is withholding internal emails from a group of U.S. state attorneys general investigating the German automaker's use of illegal diesel emissions software, a source briefed on the matter said Friday.

The world's second-larger automaker is citing German law in refusing to turn over emails and other communications between its executives. The emails were requested by a group of 48 U.S. state attorneys general investigating excess emissions in 580,000 U.S. diesel cars.

In a statement Friday, Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen criticized Volkswagen AG's decision not to cooperate.

"I find it frustrating that, despite public statements professing cooperation and an expressed desire to resolve the various investigations that it faces following its calculated deception, Volkswagen is, in fact, resisting cooperation by citing German law," Jepsen said in a statement.

The automaker declined to say if it is withholding documents.

VW CEO to Meet With EPA Chief, Members of Congress on Emissions Scandal

"We are in permanent exchange with U.S. authorities and are cooperating closely with them. We are not commenting on ongoing investigations," a spokesman at Wolfsburg-based VW said.

On Thursday, the U.S Environmental Protection Agency said that Volkwagen CEO Matthias Mueller will meet next week with EPA chief Gina McCarthy, the highest-level talks since the German automaker admitted to using software to evade emissions requirements in 580,000 U.S. vehicles.

Mueller also was expected to meet with members of Congress during his U.S. visit, which will coincide with the Detroit Auto Show.