US: DOJ to hold workshop on competition in TV and digital advertising

An e-commerce company president entered a guilty plea for conspiring to fix prices for customized promotional products sold online to customers in the United States, the Department of Justice announced.

Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim of the Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division, U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick for the Southern District of Texas, and Special Agent in Charge Perrye K. Turner of the FBI’s Houston Field Office made the announcement.

According to the felony charges filed on Nov. 1, 2018, and the plea agreement filed today in the U.S. District Court of the Southern District of Texas in Houston, Akil Kurji, owner and president of Gennex Media, and his co-conspirators agreed to fix the prices of customized promotional products sold online from as early as May 2014 until at least June 2016. These products included wristbands, lanyards, temporary tattoos, and buttons. Kurji and his co-conspirators used social media platforms and encrypted messaging applications, such as Facebook, Skype, and Whatsapp, to reach and implement their illegal agreement. Kurji is the fifth individual to enter a guilty plea in the Department of Justice’s ongoing promotional products investigation. To date, 11 defendants have been charged in the investigation into the online customized promotional products industry.

“Today’s guilty plea demonstrates the Antitrust Division’s commitment to prosecuting executives who conspire to fix prices of products sold online,” said Assistant Attorney General Delrahim. “The Department and its law enforcement partners are committed to detecting and preventing collusion carried out using encrypted messaging applications and social media platforms.”

Full Content: DOJ

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