DRAM price fixing

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In 2002, the United States Department of Justice, under the Sherman Antitrust Act, began a probe into the activities of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) manufacturers.[citation needed] US computer makers, including Dell and Gateway, claimed that inflated DRAM pricing was causing lost profits and hindering their effectiveness in the marketplace.[citation needed]

To date, five manufacturers have pleaded guilty to their involvement in an international price-fixing conspiracy including Hynix, Infineon, Micron Technology, Samsung, and Elpida.[1]

"In December 2003, the Department charged Alfred P. Censullo, a Regional Sales Manager for Micron Technology Inc., with obstruction of justice in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 1503. Censullo pleaded guilty to the charge and admitted to having withheld and altered documents responsive to a grand jury subpoena served on Micron in June 2002."[1]

On October 20, 2004, Infineon also pleaded guilty. The company was fined US$160M for its involvement, then the third largest antitrust fine in US history. In April 2005, Hynix Semiconductor was fined US$185M after they also admitted guilt. In October 2005, Samsung entered a guilty plea in connection with the cartel.[2]

On 5 April 2006, Sun Woo 'Sunny' Lee, Senior Manager of DRAM at Samsung Electronics, entered into a plea bargain with the US Government for his involvement in the price fixing conspiracyUNITED STATES OF AMERICA v. SUN WOO LEE (D.C. Cir. 2006). Text. Following the plea agreement he was sentenced to 8 months in prison and fined USD 250,000.[3]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Memory makers hit by price-fixing claims". The Register. Retrieved 2007-08-01. 
  2. ^ "SAMSUNG AGREES TO PLEAD GUILTY AND TO PAY $300 MILLION CRIMINAL FINE FOR ROLE IN PRICE FIXING CONSPIRACY" (Press release). US Department of Justice. 13 October 2005. Archived from the original on November 12, 2005. Retrieved 30 June 2010. 
  3. ^ "Samsung men 'admit' price fixing". BBC News. 2006-02-22. Retrieved 2016-04-08. 

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