Sherman Act Dept. of Justice

News & Analysis as of

Shipping Executive Acquitted of Antitrust Charge

On May 8, 2015, a jury in Puerto Rico acquitted Thomas Farmer (Farmer), the former vice president of price and yield management for Crowley Liner Services, Inc., of conspiring to suppress and eliminate competition in...more

Six-Month DOJ Criminal Cartel Summary, Part I: Auto Parts

Today we bring you the first part of our second biennial update on DOJ criminal actions in the cartel area. This has been a busy six months for the Antitrust Division, so we are breaking this update up into installments. ...more

DOJ Announces Real Estate Investor’s Guilty Plea to Foreclosure Bid Rigging and Fraud Conspiracies

On April 2, the DOJ announced a guilty plea by a Northern California real estate investor to charges of bid rigging and fraud conspiracy at foreclosure auctions in violation of the Sherman Act. The charges are the outcome of...more

Parking Heater Manufacturer Pleads Guilty to Price-Fixing

On March 12, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced that Espar Inc., pleaded guilty to one count of price-fixing under the Sherman Act in a scheme involving parking heaters for commercial vehicles that ran from...more

Lessons from the U.S. v. American Express Trial

On February 18, 2015, American Express lost its court battle with the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division over the card's Non-Discrimination Provisions ("NDPs"), which prohibited merchants from steering customers to...more

Federal Court Finds Amex’s “Anti-Steering” Merchant Rules Anticompetitive

After a seven-week bench trial in an enforcement action by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and 17 state attorneys general, U.S. District Judge Garaufis (Eastern District of New York) held that American Express Co.’s...more

Does DOJ’s Victory over American Express Foreshadow More Antitrust Challenges to Come?

American Express has rules that prohibit merchants from discriminating against American Express cards in favor of those issued by other card networks. On February 18, 2015, following a seven-week trial, Judge Garaufis in the...more

Orrick's Antitrust and Competition Newsletter (Global) - February 2015

DOJ’s Approval of Revisions to IEEE’s Standard-Setting Policies Provides Guidance for SSOs, Patent Holders, Licensees and Courts - On Feb. 2, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice issued a business review letter that...more

“And they’re closing all the factories down”* — Going Dark During a Merger Review

Demand in your industry has been declining for years, the decline is projected to continue for the foreseeable future, and you are one of the few cost-effective manufacturers around. You just inked a deal to buy a competing...more

Illegal Premerger Coordination Leads to DOJ “Gun Jumping” Enforcement Action and $5 Million Settlement—Key Lessons Affecting...

On November 7, 2014, the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) reached a $5 million settlement with Flakeboard America Limited (“Flakeboard”), its foreign parents, and SierraPine to settle allegations...more

U.S. v. Flakeboard and SierraPine: HSR “Gun-Jumping” Results in $5 Million Penalty

On November 7, 2014, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a complaint and consent decree in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California requiring Flakeboard America Limited, Flakeboard’s parent...more

District Court Allows Monopolization Claims to Move Forward on Allegations of Direct Evidence of Monopoly Power

Traditionally, plaintiffs asserting claims under Sections 1 and 2 of the Sherman Act allege the existence of one or more product markets relevant to the defendants’ anticompetitive conduct and the defendants’ shares of those...more

Antitrust-Related Recent Developments: DOJ settles gun-jumping case, FTC issues fines for failure to submit HSR filing and FTC...

DOJ fines particleboard manufacturers $4.95 million for gun-jumping violations - On Friday, November 7, 2014, two companies agreed to pay $4.95 million to settle U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) allegations that the...more

Antitrust Division Reinforces Its Resolve and Ability to Extradite Foreign Executives

The DOJ’s Antitrust Division has extradited two executives of foreign companies in the last eight months, demonstrating its commitment to enforcing the Sherman Act outside of the United States....more

"DOJ Antitrust Action Condemns Pre-Merger Coordination Requiring Target Company to Sell Factory"

On November 7, 2014, the United States Department of Justice, Antitrust Division (DOJ) announced a $5 million agreement to settle charges that Flakeboard and SierraPine had engaged in unlawful pre-merger coordination. The...more

Engineered Wood Manufacturers to Pay $3.8 Million in Fines and Disgorge $1.15 Million in Profits for Hart-Scott-Rodino Gun-Jumping...

In the first Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) gun-jumping enforcement action in five years, the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) recently announced a settlement with Flakeboard America Limited and SierraPine...more

Five Million Dollar Penalty is Stark Reminder About "Gun Jumping"

On November 7, 2014, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice ("DOJ") announced that it had imposed a civil penalty of $3.8M and disgorgement of $1.15M in profits on Flakeboard America Limited (and its parent...more

DOJ Antitrust Division Announces Settlement with Two Companies for Federal Antitrust Law Violations

On November 7, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice announced a settlement with Flakeboard America Ltd. (Flakeboard) and SierraPine for federal antitrust law violations. The settlement requires the companies to...more

Gone, Gone, the Damage Done*—Provisions in Transactional Agreements Can Raise Antitrust Risk

Soon after someone settles “gun jumping” charges, client alerts and blog posts with informative titles like “DOJ Settlement Resolves ‘Gun Jumping’ Charges” start flying around. These “alerts” and “posts” usually recite facts...more

New Guidance on Gun Jumping - DOJ Antitrust Division Settlement Clarifies the Risks of Pre-Closing Coordination, while...

Just five weeks after the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice announced that Flakeboard America had abandoned its plan to acquire a medium-density fiberboard (MDF) mill and two particleboard mills from...more

“Gun-Jumping” Companies Must Pay $3.8 Million in Fines and Disgorge $1.15 Million in Illegally Obtained Profits

Recently the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) reached a $5 million settlement with Flakeboard America Limited, its parents and SierraPine to settle allegations that the parties engaged in...more

DOJ Criminal Cartel Enforcement: Six-Month Summary

This is the first in what we expect to be a series of updates on DOJ criminal actions in the cartel area. Here, we look at highlights over the last six months in the DOJ’s investigations of the auto parts industry, LIBOR, and...more

Transaction Parties Pay Hefty Antitrust Fines for Unlawful Premerger Coordination

On November 7, 2014, Flakeboard America Limited (Flakeboard), its parent companies, and SierraPine entered into a settlement with the Department of Justice (DOJ) resolving allegations that the parties engaged in illegal...more

Minimizing Antitrust Risk in M&A Transactions

For any company looking to enter into a merger or acquisition, the laundry list of necessary pre-closing tasks can start to add up. But, just as companies must complete due diligence and identify negotiation strategies, it...more

DOJ Settles with Flakeboard and SierraPine for Gun-Jumping Action

On November 7, 2014, the Department of Justice Antitrust Division (“DOJ”) announced it had settled an enforcement action for improper premerger coordination (commonly referred to as “gun-jumping”) with Flakeboard America...more

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