15 June 2009 22:45 [Source: ICIS news]
HOUSTON (ICIS news)--The US Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear an appeal from several chemical shippers trying to avoid class-action arbitration against them in a price-fixing dispute involving animal-feed producers.
The case involves the two largest chemical shippers, Stolt-Nielson SA, and a unit of Odfjell SE - plus a unit of Mitsui and ?xml:namespace>
The shipping companies have maintained that they never agreed to arbitration and refused to participate after proceedings began in 2003.
A federal trial court ruled in favour of Stolt-Nielson but the Second US Circuit Court of Appeals in
The Supreme Court would resolve conflicting federal appeals court rulings regarding under what circumstances class-action arbitration can occur when the issue was not addressed by any of the contracts between the parties.
In an antitrust investigation related to the case, Odfjell Seachem had fines of $42.5m (€30.2m) levied against it in 2003 and two of its senior executives were jailed and fined.
($1 = €0.71)
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