June 12, 2009
Labaton Sucharow LLP Secures Partial Settlement of $20 Million in In re Puerto Rican Cabotage Antitrust Litigation
NEW YORK (June 12, 2009) - Labaton Sucharow LLP announced today a $20 million partial settlement in In re Puerto Rican Cabotage Antitrust Litigation, MDL No. 1960 with Defendants Horizon Lines, Inc., Horizon Lines, LLC, Horizon Logistics, LLC, Horizon Lines of Puerto Rico, Inc. (“Horizon Lines”). As part of the settlement, Horizon Lines has agreed to provide substantial evidence to support Plaintiffs’ allegations against the remaining Defendants, including the cooperation of the Horizon Lines employees who pleaded guilty to antitrust violations: Gabriel Serra; R. Kevin Gill; and Gregory Glova (“Horizon Lines Employees”). They will help prosecute the case against the remaining Defendants. The action is pending before the Honorable Daniel R. Dominguez in the U.S. District Court for the District of Puerto Rico. The proposed settlement requires Court approval.
The case is being prosecuted for the benefit of a class of purchasers of coastal water freight transportation services between the United States and Puerto Rico (“Puerto Rican cabotage”) for conspiring to suppress and eliminate competition in the market for Puerto Rican cabotage by allocating customers, rigging bids to customers, and fixing the prices of rates, surcharges and other fees charged to customers in violation of Sections 1 and 3 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. §§ 1 and 3.
Defendants include Horizon Lines and Horizon Lines employees Gabriel Serra; R. Kevin Gill; and Gregory Glova, as well as Sea Star Line, LLC, Crowley Maritime Corporation, Crowley Liner Services, Inc., Trailer Bridge, Inc., Saltchuk Resources, Inc., Peter Baci, Alexander G. Chisholm, and Leonard Shapiro.In October 2008, four former Horizon Lines and Sea Star Line executives pleaded guilty for antitrust violations in the U.S. mainland-Puerto Rico maritime trade, and one Sea Star executive pleaded guilty to destroying evidence of price-fixing, specifically by destroying computer files sought by investigators when federal agents raided the company.
On December 12, 2008, the United States District Court for the District of Puerto Rico appointed Ms. Salzman as part of Plaintiffs’ Interim Co-Lead Counsel. The parties are currently briefing motions to dismiss against the remaining Defendants.
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