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July 24, 2012 > Settlements exceed $1 billion in LCD flat screen price-fixing scheme

Settlements exceed $1 billion in LCD flat screen price-fixing scheme

Submitted By the Office of the State Attorney General

Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and the offices of seven other attorneys general have reached settlements totalling $571M with three manufacturers that engaged in price fixing of flat screen LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) panels found in monitors, laptops and televisions.

The settlements, announced on July 12, 2012, apply to Toshiba Corp.; LG Display Co., Ltd.; and AU Optronics Corporation (and several subsidiaries), which have collectively agreed to pay $543.5M toward damages claims, plus $27.5M in civil penalties. This follows $538.5M in settlements reached in December 2011 with seven leading LCD manufacturers, plus $14.7M in civil penalties, bringing the total recovery to more than $1.1 billion, which will be divided among 24 states and the District of Columbia.

"The price-fixing by these 10 companies broke the law and short-changed California consumers," said Harris. "This settlement brings justice to our consumers, protects companies that follow the law and ends the pernicious practice of price-fixing by these manufacturers."

In October 2010, the Attorney General's office filed a lawsuit against ten companies for engaging in price fixing of LCD panels from 1999 to 2006 that resulted in higher prices for California residents, businesses and government agencies.

The three defendants, who settled on July 12, 2012, join the seven who settled in December 2011, which included Chimei Innolux Corp., Chi Mei Optoelectronics USA, Inc., Chi Mei Optoelectronics Japan Co., Ltd, HannStar Display Corporation, Hitachi, Ltd., Hitachi Displays, Ltd., Hitachi Electronic Devices, USA, Inc., Samsung Electronics, Co., Ltd., Samsung Electronics America, Inc., Samsung Semiconductor, Inc., Sharp Corporation, and Sharp Electronics Corporation.

The Attorney General's case was originally filed in San Francisco Superior Court.

California consumers and government entities will receive a significant portion of the more than $1 billion settlements, with an exact percentage to be determined in coming months. Following completion of the litigation, California consumers and businesses can file claims for monetary relief.

Information about how to file a claim is available at the Attorney General's website http://oag.ca.gov or at www.LCDClass.org.

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