Panasonic, Whirlpool Subsidiary To Plead Guilty

Panasonic Corp. and a subsidiary of Whirlpool Corp. have agreed to plead guilty and pay more than $140 million in criminal fines for their roles in an international scheme to fix the prices of compressors for refrigerators and freezers.

In papers filed in federal court in Detroit, Panasonic and Embraco were accused by the Justice Department of conspiring to fix prices on the compressors in the U.S. and abroad from 2004 to 2007.

The Justice Department says Embraco will pay $91.8 million and Panasonic $49.1 million in criminal fines.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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