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From Antitrust Law Daily, June 7, 2016

Chilean shipping executive indicted in price fixing investigation

By Jeffrey May, J.D.

An executive of Chilean shipping company Compañia Sudamericana de Vapores S.A. (CSAV) has been charged with participating in a price fixing conspiracy involving international ocean shipping services for roll-on, roll-off cargo, such as cars and trucks. Mauricio Javier Garrido Garcia is the fourth ocean shipping executive to be indicted in the Department of Justice Antitrust Division’s ongoing investigation. A federal grand jury in Maryland handed down the one-count indictment today (U.S. v. Garcia, Criminal No. 1:16-cr-00283-GLR).

According to the Antitrust Division, Garcia participated in the conspiracy for more than a decade. Between June 2000 and September 2012, Garcia held a number of high level positions in CSAV’s car carrier services group. In those positions, he allegedly agreed with coconspirators to allocate customers and routes, to refrain from bidding against each other, and to fix rates charged to customers, including U.S. customers, on international ocean shipping services.

CSAV was the first company to plead guilty for its role in the conspiracy. The company was charged in 2014. Japanese transportation companies Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK) and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. (K-Line) have also pleaded guilty for their involvement in the scheme. Together, the three firms have paid over $136 million in criminal fines. In addition, four industry executives charged earlier in the investigation have already pleaded guilty and been sentenced to prison. One former K-Line executive and two former NYK executives also have been indicted in the probe, and the charges remain pending against those individuals.

Companies: Compañía Sud Americana de Vapores S.A.; Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha; Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd.

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