Kuehne Nagel to pay $9.9 million in anti-trust case
Swiss global transport and logistics group Kuehne + Nagel said Saturday it had agreed to pay a fine of some 9.9 million dollars to the US Justice Department in settlement of an anti-trust case.
The company said in a statement that the District of Columbia court had approved the plea agreement between Kuehne + Nagel International AG and the Department of Justice reached on September 30, 2010.
"Kuehne + Nagel has agreed to pay a fine of approximately 9.9 million dollars under the plea agreement to resolve allegations that international freight forwarders coordinated their activities with respect to establishing certain surcharges.
"In approving the plea agreement and the recommended fine, the Department of Justice and the Court recognised that Kuehne + Nagel provided substantial assistance to the US authorities through its early and extensive cooperation with the investigation."
The statement quoted Karl Gernandt, chairman of Kuehne + Nagel International, as saying the company "is committed to abiding by all antitrust laws and regulations.
"I reconfirm that we continuously develop and reinforce our compliance program to always ensure compliance with the highest available standards."
The courts approval of the plea agreement winds up a US anti-trust investigation of Kuehne + Nagel launched in 2007.
Kuehne + Nagel, which employs some 61,500 people in more than 100 countries, said at the time that competition authorities in several countries were carrying out an investigation into international freight forwarding companies.
"The investigation relates to alleged anti-competitive activities in the area of international freight forwarding," it added in a statement.
"Currently, Kuehne + Nagel sees no reason to suspect any such violations and considers the inspection excessive," it added in a statement in October 2007.
Kuehne + Nagel is one of the world's biggest sea, air and road freight and logistics companies.
© 2011 AFP