EVA Airways Corp. has agreed to pay $99 million to settle class action claims that it fixed the price of air cargo services with dozens of other carriers. This brings the total settlements in the multidistrict litigation (MDL) to more than $1 billion. EVA reached an agreement with companies that purchased air cargo services directly from the airlines and claimed the Taiwanese carrier participated in the plot to hike rates that run during much of the 2000s.
More than two dozen companies have now settled with the direct purchasers, though four carriers — Air China Ltd., Air India Ltd., Air New Zealand Ltd. and Polar Air Cargo Worldwide Inc. — are still fighting the Plaintiffs’ claims, according to Hausfeld. The multidistrict litigation dates to 2006, when consumers brought more than 90 lawsuits against more than two dozen airlines after the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the European Commission began investigating the air freight industry.
According to the DOJ, the conspirators used meetings, conversations and other communications to determine the rates the airlines should charge for various routes. The airlines and former executives then imposed the agreed-upon rates and participated in subsequent meetings in the U.S. and other countries to enforce the price-fixing plots, the government alleged.
EVA paid $13.2 million as part of a plea deal with the DOJ in 2011. Although both direct and indirect purchasers initially brought suits, the Second Circuit upheld the dismissal of indirect-purchaser Plaintiffs in 2012, saying that federal aviation law preempted price-fixing claims brought against foreign carriers under state antitrust statutes.
Contact us today for a free legal consultation with an experienced attorney.
Fields marked *may be required for submission.
If you would like to subscribe to the Jere Beasley Report digital edition, simply visit our Subscriptions page and provide the necessary information or call us at 800-898-2034.
Attorney Advertising - Prior results do not guarantee a similar outcome.