A federal jury in Kansas City, Kan., on February 20 returned a $400 million verdict against The Dow Chemical Co. in a urethane price-fixing class action. The award could be trebled to $1.2 billion under the Sherman Antitrust Act.
Plaintiffs attorneys filed the case in 2004 on behalf of a class of direct purchasers of chemicals used to make polyurethane, a form of plastic. They accused four companies besides Dow, all of which settled for considerably smaller amounts before trial.
Dow claimed that there was no direct evidence of any agreement by it or the other chemical producers to fix prices for the four urethane product categories at issue.
Lockheed Lawsuit Survives Attack
Lockheed Martin Corp. has reached a settlement in a securities class action over the company's financial disclosures, lawyers at Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd revealed in court papers on February 20.
The deal, which must be approved by U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff in New York, came after Robbins Geller survived a series of attacks by Lockheed's lawyers over its relationship with the lead plaintiff and its use of confidential witnesses.
The plaintiffs firm originally filed suit against Lockheed in July 2011 on behalf of the City of Pontiac, Mich., General Employees' Retirement System, alleging that Lockheed made false and misleading statements about its information systems and global software division.
Drilling Company To Pay $1 Billion Fine
A federal judge has approved a consent decree through which a Transocean Ltd. subsidiary will pay the U.S. government $1 billion in civil penalties for its role in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.
U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier on February 19 approved the deal between the U.S. Department of Justice and Transocean Deepwater Inc., Transocean Ocean Holdings LLC, Transocean Offshore Deepwater Drilling Inc. and Triton Asset Leasing GmbH.
The pact is part of a $1.4 billion settlement in which the Transocean Deepwater pleaded guilty on January 3 to one misdemeanor count of violating the U.S. Clean Water Act. Transocean will pay an additional $400 million in criminal penalties.