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US: Toshiba & Samsung get a win in price-fixing case

 |  December 19, 2017

On Monday, December 18, a federal judge dealt a blow to indirect buyers of optical disk drives, granting summary judgment to Samsung, Toshiba and others in a long-running conspiracy case accusing them of fixing prices around the world. The case deals with a a US$250 million antitrust class action suit.

US District Judge Richard Seeborg found that the indirect purchasers failed to prove that the defendants overcharged direct purchasers for the drives, and that the direct purchasers passed on the overcharges to them.

“Even if no evidence existed to the contrary, this single piece of secondary evidence from the deposition testimony of one corporate representative falls woefully short of meeting IPPs’ burden to show proof of pass-through,” Seeborg wrote.

A slew of plaintiffs in 2010, including HP, accused disk-drive makers of bid-rigging and price-fixing in a scheme that gave them control of 90% of the optical disk drive market. It allowed them to make more than US$45 billion between 2004 and 2008, the class claimed.

The Department of Justice revealed in 2009 that it was investigating antitrust violations in the optical disk drive industry. Hitachi-LG Data Storage pleaded guilty to criminal antitrust violations paid a US$21.1 million criminal fine.

Full Content: Courthouse News

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