| Business

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Gov.: Bridgestone agrees to plead guilty

Email Newsletters

Sign up for one of our email newsletters.

On the Grid

From the shale fields to the cooling towers, Trib Total Media covers the energy industry in Western Pennsylvania and beyond. For the latest news and views on gas, coal, electricity and more, check out On the Grid today.

By The Associated Press
Friday, Feb. 14, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

WASHINGTON — Bridgestone Corp. has agreed to plead guilty in a price-fixing conspiracy and pay a $425 million criminal fine in a Justice Department investigation that has swept the automotive parts industry.

Twenty-six companies including Tokyo-based Bridgestone have pleaded guilty or agreed to plead guilty in the Justice Department's ongoing probe into price fixing and bid rigging. The companies have agreed to pay more than $2 billion in criminal fines. Twenty-eight people have been charged.

According to a one-count felony charge in federal court in Toledo, Ohio, Bridgestone participated in allocating sales, rigging bids and raising prices of automotive anti-vibration rubber parts sold to car manufacturers in the U.S. and elsewhere.

Bridgestone sold the parts to Toyota Motor Corp., Nissan Motor Corp., Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd., Suzuki Motor Corp. and Isuzu Motors Ltd.

The Justice Department says Tokyo-based Bridgestone has agreed to cooperate with the government's ongoing auto parts investigations. The plea agreement is subject to court approval.

Bridgestone's role in the conspiracy first surfaced in October 2011 when the company pleaded guilty and paid a $28 million fine for price-fixing and for violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in the marine hose industry.

On Thursday, the Justice Department said Bridgestone did not disclose at the time of the 2011 guilty plea that it had also participated in the anti-vibration rubber parts conspiracy. Bridgestone's failure to disclose the earlier conspiracy was a factor in determining the $425 million fine, the department said.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read Business Headlines

  1. Signs of steady U.S. economy: Pay, home sales up, unemployment applications down
  2. Smartphones expected to overtake desktops for holiday shopping
  3. Nutritional supplement makers, led by GNC, want to create voluntary safety standards
  4. Many Black Friday deals not worth the hassle
  5. Stocks finish flat before Thanksgiving holiday; energy firms give back some gains
  6. Take steps to make it harder for holiday hackers
  7. Covestro leader MacCleary finds stability amid change
  8. Union leaders warn Post-Gazette newsroom of possible layoffs
  9. German financial giant Allianz SE slashes coal investments
  10. QVC blazes trail as mobile retail giant
  11. Holiday festivities help merchants in Western Pennsylvania