EUROPE: Another set of cargo airlines pleads guilty

The ongoing anti-trust investigation into the air cargo industry has move to the next stage with Air France, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Martinair Holland N.V. and SAS Cargo Group A/S all pleading guilty and agreeing to pay criminal fines totaling US$504 million for participating in a multi-year conspiracy to fix prices […]


The ongoing anti-trust investigation into the air cargo industry has move to the next stage with Air France, Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Martinair Holland N.V. and SAS Cargo Group A/S all pleading guilty and agreeing to pay criminal fines totaling US$504 million for participating in a multi-year conspiracy to fix prices for air cargo rates.

Of the total fine, Air France-KLM has agreed to pay a US$350 million, Cathay will pay US$60 million, Martinair will pay a US$42 million, and SAS has agreed to pay US$52 million, the US Department of Justice said recently.

The agency filed charges in the US District Court for the District of Columbia, alleging the airlines engaged in a “conspiracy to suppress and eliminate competition by fixing the cargo rates charged to customers for international air shipments.” The companies have each agreed to cooperate with the agency’s ongoing investigation.