Germany Fines Nestle, Others €60M Over Chocolate Cartel

Law360, New York (January 31, 2013, 2:25 PM EST) -- Germany's antitrust regulator hit 11 chocolate and confectionery companies with €60 million ($81.5 million) in fines Thursday for operating an illegal price-fixing cartel in the country in the late-2000s.

The Federal Cartel Office, or Bundeskartellamt, said the German subsidiaries of Kraft Foods, Nestle SA, and Mars Inc., as well as the German chocolate maker Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co., were among those involved in the collusive activity.

The probe was launched after Mars blew the whistle on the operation in 2008, meaning the U.S.-based candy maker won't face the same fines as its 11 co-conspirators.

Andreas Mundt, president of the Bundeskartellamt,...

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