A Californian jury reached a verdict today after two days of deliberations, ruling that Toshiba is guilty of conspiring with several other Japanese, Korean, and Taiwanese LCD manufacturers to raise component prices from 1999 to 2006, Bloomberg Businessweek reports. Several of the companies, like LG Display, Sharp, and others faced criminal charges and pled guilty, paying a total of $585 million. The Taiwanese AU Optronics was fined an undisclosed amount — said to be up to $1 billion — in March of this year when it was criminally convicted of anticompetitive practices. Toshiba was the final hold out in the wide-spanning case, which claimed that the manufacturers met in hotel rooms to set artificially high prices that cost computer and TV companies more money — costs that were in turn passed along to consumers.
The 10-person California jury ruled that Toshiba was liable for $17 million in damages to manufacturers and $70 million to consumers, and under US laws it may be charged three times as much; or $261 million. However, the Japanese company says it "plans to pursue all available legal avenues to correct [today's] finding," and even if it is unsuccessful, the company projects that it won't have to pay any damages because it's all been covered by settlements from other corporations involved in the scheme. Like AU Optronics, Toshiba claims that it did not participate in the price-fixing meetings.