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May 18, 2010 1:05 PM

Toyota pays fine over pedal problem

Toyota has paid a record $16.4 million fine for a slow response to its accelerator pedal recall.

A Transportation Department official says the Japanese automaker paid the fine on Tuesday. The company agreed to the fine on April 19 and had 30 days to pay it. The official was not authorized to speak publicly before an announcement was made.  The fine is the maximum allowed under law. The government accused the company of hiding earlier defects involving gas pedals, a contention that Toyota rejected even though it agreed to pay the fine.

Toyota said it agreed to the fine to avoid a lengthy legal battle but denied the government's allegation that it broke the law.

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