A Japanese businessman working for Denso car parts maker in the U.S. was sentenced to one year in prison and will have to pay a $20,000 fine for his involvement in a price-fixing scheme uncovered by the American authorities.
Norihiro Imai plead guilty to the charge of conspiring to fix prices of heater control panels installed in American cars. The scam went on from August 2006 to at least June 2009, according to the U.S. Justice Department.
“Today’s guilty plea demonstrates the Antitrust Division’s commitment to hold executives accountable for engaging in illegal conduct that leads to higher prices for American businesses and consumers,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Sharis Pozen.
A dozen companies on three continents were proven to be involved in the scheme, making this “the largest criminal investigation the Antitrust Division has ever pursued,” according to the authority.
Denso Corp. and Yazaki Corp. recently agreed to pay fines of $78 million and $470 million, respectively. Additionally, four executives of Yazaki which worked in the company’s U.S. offices are set to go to prison for up to two years for their involvement in the price-fixing scheme which stretched from the U.S. to Japan and Europe.