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StarKist Wants Price-Fixing Case Ruling Thrown Out Due Over Judge’s Stock Interests

 |  February 6, 2022

Class certification decisions made by US District Judge Janis Sammartino should be thrown out, tuna company StarKist and its parent company Dongwon Industries argued in an appellate court in November.

The class certification battle is part of a lawsuit against major tuna canners StarKist, Bumble Bee Foods and Chicken of the Sea filed by retailers and other companies impacted by the canned tuna price-fixing conspiracy.

Related: StarKist ordered to pay $100 million criminal fine

The litigation followed a Dept. of Justice investigation into the industry, which led to guilty pleas and criminal fines amounting to $25 million against Bumble Bee and up to $100 million for StarKist, according to the legal news service. Chicken of the Sea cooperated with the government and was neither fined nor charged.

There were more than 70 suits consolidated in multidistrict litigation before the accused companies started cutting deals at the beginning of 2019. Chicken of the Sea reached deals with Target, Sysco Corp. and US Foods. in 2019.

With Bumble Bee having filed for bankruptcy, the main party left in the is StarKist, which was recently found civilly liable in November.

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