On Wednesday a federal grand jury in Las Vegas handed down an indictment accusing a healthcare executive of conspiring to suppress the wages for local nurses, in violation of US antitrust law. If convicted, the executive could face severe criminal penalties.
Eduardo Lopez, of Las Vegas, was recently charged with being involved in a conspiracy between March 2016 and May 2019. The one-count felony indictment states that he held executive positions at multiple home health agencies and conspired to suppress and eliminate competition in regard to wages for nursing staff. Specifically, Lopez and other co-conspirators were charged with participating in meetings and outreach to fix the wages of nurses across different facilities.
Read more: DOJ Withdraws Long-Standing Health Care Antitrust Policy Statements
“Wage fixing is a crime that deprives workers of hard-earned wages,” said Assistant Attorney General Jonathan Kanter of the Justice Department’s Antitrust Division. “The Antitrust Division will be vigilant in protecting workers.”
“We will continue to partner with the Antitrust Division and the FBI to protect the marketplace and the rights of workers to earn fair wages,” said U.S. Attorney Jason M. Frierson for the District of Nevada. “We will investigate and prosecute those who engage in anti-competitive activities.”
“The wage fixing alleged in this case harmed hardworking Americans and cheated them of fair opportunity and compensation,” said Assistant Director Luis Quesada of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division. “The FBI is committed to rooting out anti-competitive activity and corruption.”