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On December 3, 2019, after a four-week trial, Christopher Lischewski was found guilty by a jury of conspiring to fix prices in the canned tuna market in violation of 15 U.S.C. Section 1.  Throughout the trial proceedings below, Lischewski preserved his challenge to the constitutionality of the per se rule in his criminal Sherman Act prosecution. On appeal, Lischewski argued to the Ninth Circuit that his conviction should be overturned on several grounds, including his objection…
Bob Connolly    bob@reconnollylaw.com July 4th has come and gone and still there the Antitrust Division, US Department of Justice has no permanent leader. Reluctantly,  I declare myself a new entrant into the market for the job. From press reports it seems many qualified potential leaders are knocked out because of they have previous articulated positions–pro or con–related to high technology companies and high-tech. I can assure everyone that I can articulate no portions on…
Bob Connolly    bob@reconnollylaw.com. The Supreme Court’s decision in Nat’l Collegiate Athletic Ass’n v. Alston, Nos. 20-512 and 20-520, 2021 WL 2519036, (U.S. June 21, 2021) is a boost for the Antitrust Division’s commitment to prosecute what it calls naked “wage fixing” and “no poach” agreements.  In the prosecutions it has brought to date (still in the early stages) defendants have argued that the rule of reason, not the per se rule, should apply, because…
Bob Connolly   bob@reconnollylaw.com In a prior post I listed a number of ideas I thought it would be useful for the Biden Administration’s Antitrust Division to consider when the new leadership is in place.  The first item I wrote on was “A Call to Reopen the Atlanta and Dallas Field Offices.”  Below is a short note on another initiative I hope the DOJ Antitrust Division will consider: Support Senator Klobuchar’s Proposed Legislation to…
[In the near future there will be new leadership at the Antitrust Division.  But “near future” is a relative term so before I forget what I was thinking about, I offer this post. Bob Connolly, bob@reconnollylaw.com] When there is a new Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust she/he will no doubt have many new ideas for running the Division.  Attorney General Merrick Garland has a strong interest and background in antitrust and undoubtedly has also…
This Wednesday I will be among the speakers at a virtual event discussing whistleblowers and antitrust enforcement.  The Federal Bar Association Qui Tam Section is hosting a free Zoom roundtable on Wednesday, April 28th at 12:00 noon Eastern on the False Claims Act and Antitrust Enforcement.  For more information and to register click here. This is a timely program.  The Department of Justice has recently concluded an investigation/prosecution of bid rigging on Defense Department fuel…
I am sorry to report the passing of John J. Hughes.  John was the longtime Chief of the Philadelphia Office of the Antitrust Division, United States Department of Justice.  I  had the good fortune of working under John for many years until his retirement in 1994.  John was loved by all who worked for him as a great boss, priceless mentor, and dear friend.  We all owe him a great debt. https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/inquirer/obituary.aspx?n=john-j-hughes&pid=198435951 After John “retired”…
Bob Connolly   bob@reconnollylaw.com In the coming months there will be many proposals advanced to amend the Sherman Act.  My offering is to amend Section 1 with this text: “Price fixing, bid rigging and market/customer allocation are per se illegal.”  You may think the Sherman Act already says this.  It does not.  The text simply states “restraints of trade” are illegal.  The Supreme Court has held that these three words somehow created two distinct substantive…
Bob Connolly     bob@reconnollylaw.com In late 2019 the European Union issued a Directive requiring comprehensive and coherent protection of whistleblowers.  The twenty-seven Member States have until December 2021 to incorporate the Directive into their national legislation.  The member states are required to provide protection from retaliation for whistleblowers but not a system of monetary reward.  Conversely, in the United States, Senator Amy Klobuchar recently proposed sweeping antirust reform legislation including a proposal to “establish…
           I attended the 2021 ABA Antitrust Law Section Spring Meeting that was held over March 22-26, 2021.  Once again, and hopefully the last time, the meeting was held virtually but it was as good as a virtual meeting could be in my humble opinion.  The programs and structure were pretty much the same as the in-person Spring Meeting with a wide range of topics.  While I tend to favor the…