Fri, Apr 30, 2010 - Page 12 News List

Chi Mei executive accepts sentence, fine


A Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corp (奇美電子) sales executive, charged in the US with participating in a conspiracy to fix prices of display panels, agreed to a prison sentence of 270 days and a fine of US$25,000.

Prosecutors and an attorney for Chu-hsiang “James” Yang (楊柱祥) said in a plea agreement filed on Wednesday in US Federal Court in San Francisco that Yang would plead guilty to participating in a conspiracy to suppress and eliminate competition by fixing the prices of LCD panels sold in the US from 2004 to 2006.

The government recommended a reduced sentence for Yang because he helped prosecutors in its investigation and prosecutions of LCD price fixing, according to the agreement. The maximum penalty for price fixing is 10 years in prison and a US$1 million fine, or twice the gain or loss from the conduct plus restitution, according to the filings.

A judge still must approve the sentence for Yang, who is scheduled to appear in court to enter a guilty plea today.

Chi Mei merged with Innolux Display Corp (群創光電) on March 18 to form the nation’s biggest LCD maker, Chimei Innolux Corp (奇美電子), where Yang still works, company spokseman Eddie Chen (陳彥松) said.

Chi Mei pleaded guilty in December and agreed to pay US$220 million in fines. The investigation has led to more than US$860 million in fines for LCD makers and guilty pleas by at least four executives.

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