Crain News Service report
DETROIT (Feb. 24, 2015) — Japan's Sanden Corp. has agreed to plead guilty and pay a $3.2 million fine for conspiring to price fix air conditioning systems sold to Nissan Motor Co. Ltd., joining a list of 32 other companies that have been charged in the U.S. Department of Justice's ongoing price fixing investigation into the auto supply chain.
In documents filed recently by federal prosecutors in U.S. District Court in Detroit, Sanden was charged with one count of conspiracy to restrain trade for scheming to price fix compressors sold to Nissan North America, according to court documents.
The Sanden case is the latest action in the largest antitrust prosecution in U.S. history. Similar investigations also have been under way in Canada, Europe and Asia.
Brent Snyder, deputy assistant attorney general for the Antitrust Division's criminal enforcement program, said in a statement that the charge “is the latest in the Antitrust Division's ongoing investigation of automobile parts suppliers.
“The division continues to vigorously prosecute companies and individuals that seek to maximize their profits through illegal, anticompetitive means.”