back to article Hitachi ponies up $3.5m for laptop battery rip-off

Hitachi has agreed to pay $3.45m for its part in a massive price fixing conspiracy over lithium-ion batteries. The proposed settlement [PDF] covers an eleven-year period from 2000 to 2011 when prosecutors claim a huge section of the laptop market, including Hitachi, Sony, NEC, Samsung, Sanyo and Toshiba, all agreed to …

  1. Keef

    Assuning...

    "Assuming, of course, they are still using the same email from over a decade ago and assuming they can prove the purchase"

    I guess this is USA only compensation, but at least they have a chance to get some recompense.

    I also guess the racketeering wasn't only perpetrated in the USA.

    If you live in a puppet state such as the UK I suppose you may just as well accept being stiffed by every corporate entity every time for ever with no recourse as we don't have effective regulation.

    /Rant

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Assuning...

      Rubbish!

      We have VERY effective regulation.

      The regulations are very effective at stopping us doing the same as our cousins accross the pond do, when hypermegaglobalcorp shafts us in the UK up the balloon knot...

    2. VulcanV5

      Re: Assuming...

      On BBC Radio 4's well-respected 'You and Yours' programme t'other lunchtime, it was reported that a 2014 UK government initiative intended to help individuals repeatedly targeted by postal scams was failing miserably. The consumer protection scheme was created in response to findings that the names and addresses of around 10,000 individuals in the UK -- the overwhelming majority elderly, living alone, and likely to be suffering from some age-related illness or other -- had finished up on target lists bought and sold by criminal gangs, as a result of which they were being subjected to repeated, multiple scam attempts.

      The initiative called upon local authority Trading Standards officers to visit local victims and set up a contact arrangement whereby the victims could provide TS with whatever scam materials they were receiving. The arrangement would not only aid investigations into the scammers, it would also reassure the victims that official help was readily to hand.

      A check into how well the scheme was working showed that in the two years it has been running, only 120 victims have so far been visited. The failure was explained by a representative of the Trading Standards Institute as a case of the government on one hand making lofty promises about UK consumer protection and, on the other hand, cutting the resources upon which those promises depended for their fulfillment.

      The government, said the representative, had abolished so many UK trading standards posts that the total today is exactly half what it was five years ago.

      I seem to remember that a particular politician and a particular political party of recent memory made much of something called The Big Society. What wasn't made clear was that this referred to The Big Society of Scammers and Scumbags. Perhaps we should've asked.

  2. Cuddles Silver badge

    Good job if you can get it

    1) Make billions ripping off customers;

    2) Invest said billions;

    3) Use small amount of interest accrued to pay of fines;

    4) GOTO 1)

    5) No need for Profit! step here, that was step 1.

    What's the point of even bothering to fine anyone if the fines only come to a tiny percentage of the scam income several years down the line? In order to remove the incentive for crime, fines have to be an absolute minimum of the gain from said crime. If you still allow people to profit from crime even when they get caught, all you're doing is guaranteeing that crime actually does pay.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Good job if you can get it

      And there's little you can do about it without some kind of global authority. Because if you push your hand too much, they'll vanish and take their ill-gotten gains to the protection of another sovereign power, at which point they'll regroup and re-enter under a new identity. Which would you rather have? 10% of something or 100% of nothing?

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