Cases & Deals

American Airlines successfully defends EC air cargo investigation

Client(s) American Airlines, Inc.

Jones Day defended American Airlines in the European Commission investigation of air cargo carriers, which commenced in February 2006 with unannounced inspections of several companies, in parallel with investigations by U.S. and South Korean antitrust authorities. In December 2007, the Commission issued a Statement of Objection ("SO") against the airlines, alleging a conspiracy to set surcharges on cargo shipments to offset cost increases to cover fuel and security measures. This highly complex matter involved an exceptionally large number of parties (almost 30), questions about the application of EU antitrust law exemptions to airline alliance agreements, and political considerations.

In a November 2010, decision, the Commission fined eleven airlines a total of €799.4 million. No infringement of competition rules was found against American Airlines and thus no fine was imposed.