Hitachi-LG Exec Gets|Prison for Bid Rigging

     SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – A Hitachi-LG executive will plead guilty and go to prison for conspiring to rig bids for optical disk drives, federal prosecutors said.
     Hitach-LG Data Storage’s senior sales manager Woo Jin Yang admitted he rigged bids for drives sold to Hewlett-Packard between 2006 and 2009, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
     He was charged in a criminal information with four felony violations, including antitrust charges. He faced up to 10 years in prison and $1 million in fines on each count.
     Under a plea agreement subject to court approval, he will serve 6 months in prison and pay a fine of $25,000.
     According to court documents, Yang and his co-conspirators submitted “collusive and noncompetitive bids” to HP. They also exchanged information on sales, market share and pricing of optical disk drives, to monitor and enforce adherence to the agreements, prosecutors said.
     A joint venture of Hitachi and LG Electronics, Hitachi-LG Data Storage pleaded guilty in November 2011 to 14 federal antitrust violations, and one count of participating in a scheme to defraud.
     The company was given a $21.1 million criminal fine and ordered to assist investigations of the optical disk drive industry.

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