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Antitrust Litigation

Kasowitz regularly represents clients, as plaintiffs or defendants, in cases involving price-fixing, bid-rigging, tying, exclusive dealing, conspiracies, attempts to monopolize, and monopolization.  The firm’s antitrust experience spans a wide range of industries, including shipping, chemicals, agricultural and processed foods, telecommunications, and publishing.  The firm’s antitrust lawyers have received extensive recognition by Chambers USA, Who’s Who Legal, and Best Lawyers in America, among others, and have chaired American Bar Association antitrust committees and other similar groups.

Notable representations include: 

  • Ford Motor Company in connection with its claims arising from long-term global antitrust conspiracies by certain automobile parts suppliers to fix prices, rig bids and allocate customers. Twenty-one suppliers have pled guilty or have agreed to plead guilty to price-fixing, bid rigging and customer allocation in connection with the ongoing international cartel investigation by the Antitrust Division of the United States Department of Justice. DOJ is coordinating with the antitrust agencies of Japan, Canada, Republic of Korea, Mexico, Australia, and the European Commission. To date, the investigation has resulted in criminal fines of $1.8 billion and the Antitrust Division has reported that this is the largest criminal antitrust investigation ever pursued by DOJ, and that its work in this area is not finished.
  • Comcast in the defense of a class action involving effectively three sub-classes – each consisting of approximately two million cable subscribers – alleging that Comcast violated antitrust monopolization laws through cable system "clustering" in the Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston areas. The firm represented Comcast in a four-day class certification hearing for the Philadelphia area, resulting in a decision by the federal district court significantly limiting the issues for trial. The court further limited issues on summary judgment. In March 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Comcast in a landmark 5-4 decision that overturned the certification of the Philadelphia class.
  • Source Interlink Distribution, L.L.C. and Source Interlink Companies, Inc. in an antitrust suit against leading magazine publishers and distributors, alleging that these companies conspired to boycott Source, a magazine wholesaler, and force it out of business.  Kasowitz successfully obtained an injunction requiring publishers and distributors to resume supplying magazines to Source.  The defendants thereafter settled with Source, agreeing to continue supplying magazines to Source.  The American Lawyer magazine, which reported on the case, referred to Kasowitz as being “like Superman standing in front of a speeding locomotive” to protect Source.
  • Industrial manufacturers, including Toyota Tsusho Corporation, Tomen America, Inc., Transammonia, Inc., Trammochem AG, Transgrain Shipping B.V., Grupo Celanese S.A., Acetex Corporation, and Millenium Petrochemicals, Inc., in several international arbitrations arising from a parcel tanker price-fixing conspiracy. Kasowitz’s clients alleged violation of the Sherman Act, as well as unfair competition claims.  These cases were resolved pursuant to confidential settlements.
  • NuCal Foods, Inc., one of the nation’s largest egg producers, in defending a multi-district litigation proceeding in federal district court in Philadelphia, in which NuCal and most of the country’s other large shell egg and processed egg products producers are accused of price-fixing violations of the Sherman Act. The firm also represents NuCal with respect to an investigation being conducted by the Florida Attorney General’s office regarding the same conduct.
  • Anderson News, L.L.C. in an antitrust suit against leading magazine publishers and distributors, alleging that these companies conspired to boycott Anderson, a magazine wholesaler, and forced it out of business. The trial court granted the publishers' and distributors’ motions to dismiss the complaint, but the Second Circuit vacated the judgment and remanded the case to the trial court, where Anderson will be able to pursue its claims.
  • Visa, Inc. in defense of price-fixing and unfair business practices litigation involving credit card currency conversion pricing. 
  • FIG LLC, an affiliate of Fortress Investment Group LLC, in an action in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York brought by Leslie Dick Worldwide Ltd. and Leslie Dick, which sought more than $1 billion dollars in damages for alleged RICO and antitrust conspiracies, concerning the 2003 sale of the General Motors Building in New York City and the Conseco bankruptcy.  The firm successfully obtained the dismissal of the claims against Fortress. 
  • Hoechst GmbH and other major chemical companies in defense of an action filed by 30 major textile manufacturers in multi-district litigation alleging a price-fixing conspiracy in the North American polyester staple fiber market.  This case was resolved pursuant to a confidential settlement.
  • The New York Jets in an antitrust action against Cablevision, the owner of Madison Square Garden, alleging that Cablevision attempted to sabotage the Jets' attempt to build a sports and convention center on the west side of Manhattan, in order to control venues for major sports and entertainment events.  This case was resolved after a deal was reached for an alternative site.
  • Liggett Group LLC in defense of an action by a putative statewide class of retail customers alleging that Liggett conspired with other cigarette manufacturers to unlawfully fix cigarette prices in New Mexico, seeking hundreds of millions of dollars in damages.  The trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Liggett and all other defendants was affirmed by the appellate court with respect to Liggett and one other manufacturer, but reversed as to the other cigarette manufacturers. 
  • General Reinsurance in an antitrust litigation brought by EchoStar alleging improper denial of insurance coverage and improper refusal to issue new coverage. 
  • Four senior executives of a leading Asian electronics company in a criminal price-fixing investigation brought by the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division, successfully negotiating immunity for the executives.
  • International Oil Trading Company ("IOTC") in a matter involving federal and state antitrust and RICO allegations brought by a disappointed bidder for a valuable Pentagon contract to supply fuel to United States troops in Iraq.  Though the Pentagon determined that IOTC was the only qualified bidder, the plaintiff, a multi-national foreign corporation, avers that IOTC and its principals impaired its ability to qualify to compete for the Department of Defense contract by allegedly influencing foreign officials. 
  • Washington Mutual Bank in defense of price-fixing and unfair business practices claims concerning credit card late and over limit fees.  Kasowitz successfully obtained the dismissal of all claims against WaMu. 
  • Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. in litigation and settlement of antitrust claims relating to “authorized generics,” and alleged manipulation of the Hatch-Waxman process. 
  • Executives of Toshiba Corporation in defense of price-fixing investigations by the Department of Justice. 
  • George Weston Bakeries Ltd. (n/k/a Bimbo Bakeries USA), the baker of Thomas’, Boboli, Entenmann’s, Freihofer, Stroehmann, Arnold, and other fresh baked products, in defense of Sherman and Robinson-Patman Act claims filed by distributors of those products.  Kasowitz successfully obtained the dismissal of all of the distributors’ antitrust claims.

Highlights 

Kasowitz Ranked by Benchmark Plaintiff 2013

Kasowitz is ranked as “Highly Recommended” for Litigation in New York and was nationally ranked for Antitrust, Insurance and Securities.  Marc E. Kasowitz, Daniel R. Benson, Hector Torres, Robin L. Cohen and Michael E. Hutchins are ranked as “litigation stars."