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The Ninth Circuit Gives the Antitrust Division Another Victory in a Cartel Case and Provides Further Guidance on the FTAIA

Jeremy Evans and Holly House, Paul Hastings, Insights, July 2014

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In a victory for the U.S. government, the Ninth Circuit last Thursday affirmed criminal price-fixing convictions of AU Optronics, Inc. (“AUO”), a Taiwanese-based company, and two of its senior executives arising from alleged price-fixing of LCD panels. The decision, and underlying reasoning, marks another step in the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division’s pursuit of international cartels and its aggressive approach with regard to conduct and products that fall within its jurisdiction. It also shows the increasing willingness of U.S. courts to provide a forum for criminal and civil antitrust claims—cases in which foreign companies, primarily Asian-based companies, are frequently targets and defendants.

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