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Christopher Lischewski, Bumble CEO, indicted in tuna value fixing rip-off

The CEO of Bumble Bee meals was indicted late Wednesday by a federal grand jury for his function in a conspiracy to repair tuna costs on the worldwide market.

Christopher Lischewski was indicted on a depend of conspiracy. The Division of Justice alleged Lischewski and others conspired to problem value bulletins and steering to repair, increase and preserve the worth of tuna from 2011 via 2013.

Bumble Bee itself pleaded responsible final yr to 1 depend of pricing fixing and agreed to pay a legal tremendous of $25 million.

Mr. Lischewski is the fourth particular person to be charged on account of the continued federal antitrust investigation into the packaged seafood trade.

A bunch of companies who purchase tuna merchandise, together with retailers, meals service firms and in addition customers, have filed a civil swimsuit towards the tuna cartel. The lawsuit alleges price-fixing allegations towards Bumble Bee, StarKist & Co., and Tri Union Seafoods.

These three firms have lengthy dominated the U.S. tuna market. In December 2015, the Justice Division stopped Tri Union from shopping for Bumble Bee, a deal that might have merged the nation’s first and second largest tuna producers.

“This indictment demonstrates the personal accountability of senior leadership at corporations,” mentioned Particular Agent in Cost John F. Bennett. “The FBI and the Department of Justice will hold corporate leaders accountable for criminal actions that defraud American families.”

Mr. Lischewski’s legal professional, John Keker of Keker Van Nest & Peters mentioned his shopper is “innocent of any wrongdoing.”

“We’re dissatisfied by the DOJ’s choice to cost him with legal conduct,” Mr. Keker mentioned in a press release. “When the facts are known and the truth emerges, Mr. Lischewski will be found not guilty, and that vindication will rightfully restore his good name.”

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