Feeds

LCD makers to pay $585m for price-fixing conspiracy

Cartel burned Dell, Apple, Motorola

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

Three Asian electronics manufactures on Wednesday agreed to pay a combined $585m after admitting they conspired to drive up the prices of liquid crystal display monitors that were bought by Dell, Apple, Motorola, and others.

LG Display of South Korea, Sharp of Japan, and Chunghwa of Taiwan pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges filed in US District Court in San Francisco. In addition to agreeing to pay fines, the three companies have offered to cooperate in an ongoing antitrust investigation, meaning other electronics makers may soon face similar charges.

According to prosecutors, executives from all three companies repeatedly met and communicated with their co-conspirators and agreed to charge predetermined prices for LCD monitors. Sharp's actions directly inflated the price of LCD devices bought by Apple for iPods, Motorola for Razr phones, and Dell for undisclosed products. Court documents charging LG Display and Chunghwa didn't list customers who were cheated.

"These price-fixing conspiracies affected millions of American consumers who use computers, cell phones and numerous other household electronics every day,” Thomas Barnett, assistant attorney general in charge of the Justice Department's antitrust division, said in a statement. "These convictions, and the significant fines they carry, should send a clear message that the Antitrust Division will vigorously investigate and prosecute illegal cartels, regardless of where they are located."

LG Display's fine totaled $400m, the second highest criminal fine ever imposed in a US antitrust case. Sharp has agreed to pay $120m, and Chunghwa will pay $65m. The case was brought by the same San Francisco-based team that has successfully prosecuted makers of dynamic random access memory chips for price fixing and netted $730m from companies including Samsung, Elpida, Hynix, and Infineon.

The market for LCD panels is about $70bln, the Justice Department said. Prosecutors didn't estimate the loss caused by the price fixing. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder
And now a message from our sponsors: 'STFU or else'
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Uber, Lyft and cutting corners: The true face of the Sharing Economy
Casual labour and tired ideas = not really web-tastic
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
Don't even THINK about copyright violation, says Indian state
Pre-emptive arrest for pirates in Karnataka
The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal
And our man Corfield is pretty bloody cross about it
Oz biz regulator discovers shared servers in EPIC FACEPALM
'Not aware' that one IP can hold more than one Website
prev story

Whitepapers

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup
Learn why inSync received the highest overall rating from Druva and is the top choice for the mobile workforce.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.