Case: Air Cargo Shipping Services Antitrust Litigation, MDL No. 1775, 06-MD-1775 (JG) (VVP) (E.D.N.Y.)
Court: Eastern District of New York
Class Period: November 14, 2005 – Present
Attorneys: Robert N. Kaplan, Gregory K. Arenson, Gary L. Specks, Elana Katcher

Kaplan Fox has been appointed by the court as co-lead counsel for direct purchasers of air cargo shipping services in an antitrust class action against the world’s major providers of air cargo shipping services. Specifically, it is alleged that during the time January 1, 2000 through at least February 14, 2006, the defendants participated in a conspiracy to impose inflated surcharges (such as fuel surcharges) on their customers, to eliminate or prevent discounting of air cargo shipping services, to agree on yields, and to allocate customers or routes all in violation of the Section One of the Sherman Antitrust Act.

Twenty of the defendants named in the litigation have also pled guilty to federal criminal antitrust violations collectively paying over $1.5 billion in criminal fines to the United States government. One defendant, Lufthansa, disclosed the conspiracy to the United States Department of Justice, and as a result, was accepted into the Department of Justice’s leniency program. Many of the defendants have also been the subject of proceedings before various competition regulatory authorities throughout the world, including in the European Union, Korea and Australia, relating to their participation in the worldwide conspiracy.

The following providers of air cargo shipping services have been named as defendants in the action: ABSA Cargo Airlines, Air Canada, Air China, Air France, Air India, Air Mauritius, Air New Zealand, Alitalia, All Nippon Airways, American Airlines, Asiana Airlines, British Airways, Cargolux, Cathay Pacific, China Airlines, DAS Air Cargo, El Al, Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Airways, Japan Airlines, Kenya Airways, KLM, Korean Air, Lan Cargo, Lufthansa, Malaysia Airlines, Martinair, Nippon Cargo, Polar Air, Qantas, SAS, Saudi Arabian Airways, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways, Swiss International Air Lines, Thai Airways, and VARIG. Several executives of the defendants are also named as defendants.

Over $278 million in settlements have been recovered from defendants Air France, American Airlines, All Nippon Airways, Cargolux, Japan Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Martinair, Qantas, SAS, Swiss International Airlines and Thai Airways.

Another $176 million in settlements with defendants ABSA Cargo Airlines, British Airways, Lan Cargo, Malaysia Airlines, Saudi Arabian Airways, and South African Airways are awaiting preliminary approval by the court.

If you wish to learn more about the litigation, please feel free to contact any of the Kaplan Fox attorneys listed above.