Three airlines plead guilty on cargo price fixing
Cargolux, Nippon Cargo and Asiana Airlines have each agreed to plead guilty and pay criminal fines totaling $214 million for conspiring to fix prices in the air cargo industry.
According to the charges filed today in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, Cargolux engaged in a conspiracy in the United States and elsewhere to eliminate competition by fixing the cargo rates charged to customers for international air shipments, including to and from the United States, from as early as September 2001 and continuing until Feb. 14, 2006. The company has agreed to pay a $119 million criminal fine.
NCA engaged in a conspiracy to eliminate competition by fixing the cargo rates charged to customers in the United States and elsewhere for international air shipments, from in or about April 2000 until at least Feb. 14, 2006. NCA has agreed to pay a $45 million criminal fine.
Asiana engaged in a conspiracy to eliminate competition by fixing both cargo rates and passenger fares from at least as early as January 2000 until at least Feb. 14, 2006. Asiana has agreed to pay a $50 million criminal fine.
Under the plea agreements, which are subject to court approval, Cargolux, NCA and Asiana have agreed to cooperate with the Department's ongoing investigation. "Fifteen airlines and three executives have been prosecuted to date for their participation in price-fixing agreements that inflicted a heavy toll on American businesses and consumers as well as the global economy," said Scott D. Hammond, Acting Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Department's Antitrust Division. "The Department will continue its investigation into this criminal conduct until all co-conspirators are brought to justice."