Jo Tankers Pays $19.5 Million Criminal Fine
The U.S. Department of Justice stated that, as a result of the conspiracy, consumers for international parcel tanker services paid non-competitive and higher prices. Jo Tankers, with its principal place of business in Spijkenisse, The Netherlands, was charged in the U.S. District Court in Philadelphia.
According to the charges, between the second half of 1998 and November, 2002, Jo Tankers participated with its co-conspirators in the parcel tanker shipping conspiracy which was carried out by:
? engaging in meetings and discussions concerning customers and prices of parcel tanker shipping of products to and from the U.S. and elsewhere.
? Agreeing not to compete for one another?s customers, either by not submitting prices or bids to certain customers, or by submitting intentionally high prices or bids to certain customers; and
? Discussing and exchanging prices submitted to certain customers so as not to undercut one another?s prices.
On January 7, 2004, Hendrikus van Westerbrugge, a former Co-Managing Director of Jo Tankers, was sentenced to serve three months incarceration and to pay a fine of $75,000 for his role in the conspiracy.
On October 22, 2003, Odfjell Seachem Chairman, Bjorn Sjaastad, and Vice President, Erik Nilsen, pleaded guilty of participating in the shipping cartel. Odfjell was sentenced to pay a $42.5 million fine; Sjaastad was sentenced to serve four months and to pay a $250,000 fine, and Nilsen was sentenced to three months incarceration and to pay a $250,000 fine.