Home Fraud Taiwan Auto Lights Producer Pleads to Price Fixing

Taiwan Auto Lights Producer Pleads to Price Fixing

Taiwan Auto Lights Producer Pleads to Price Fixing

On October 16, 2012, the Department of Justice announced that Eagle Eyes Traffic Industrial Co Ltd and its US subsidiary E-Lite Automotive Inc agreed to pay $5 million in criminal fines for a price-fixing scheme that lasted a total of seven years.  The company sold aftermarket auto lights that are often used in repairs and for upgrades.  

A superseding indictment in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in San Francisco stated that the Taiwan-based auto light manufacturer worked with other companies in order to suppress competition within the market.  The two highest-ranking officers were charged in the indictment.  The chairman, Yu-Chu Lin, and the vice chairman, Homy Hong-Ming Hsu, were charged.  

Court documents proved that the two men held secret meetings with other co-conspirators and fixed the prices using agreed upon formulas.  The co-conspirators then tried to hide their price fixing.  

Chairman Lin is still a fugitive, but vice chairman Hsu was arrested in Los Angeles and pleaded guilty on September 25, 2012.  

Joseph Wayland, the Acting Assistant Attorney for the Antitrust Division, stated: “The conspirators engaged in an international price-fixing scheme that undermined competition in the aftermarket auto lights industry.  As a result of the division’s vigorous enforcement efforts, four corporations and five executives have been charged.”

The two other corporations are Sabry Lee and Maxzone.  Sabry Lee was ordered to pay a criminal fine of $200,000 and Maxzone was ordered to pay a criminal fine of $43 million.  

The former chairman of Depo Auto Parts Industrial Co Ltd, Shiu-Min Hsu, pleaded guilty on March 20, 2012.  The former executive of Sabry Lee, Chien Chung Chen, pleaded guilty on June 7, 2011.  Polo Shu-Sheng Hsu, the highest-ranking officer for Maxzone, pleaded guilty on March 29, 2012.  The first two executives are still awaiting sentencing, and Polo Shu-Sheng Hsu has already served his sentence of 180 days in prison.  

Source: Department of Justice