Richmond, Va. -- Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli today announced a $173 million settlement with six international manufacturers of computer chips.

The settlement resolved claims that the companies engaged in a price-fixing arrangement that cost government purchasers and consumers millions of dollars in overcharges for their chips.

Cuccinelli and 32 other state attorneys general participated in investigation and the settlement.

In July 2006, the multi-state group filed a complaint in federal court in the Northern District of California alleging that consumers, state agencies, state universities and colleges, and local governments overpaid for products containing Dynamic Random Access Memory DRAM chips at inflated prices because of the price-fixing agreement.

DRAM is a common form of memory chip found in desktop computers, laptops, servers, cell phones, printers, and networking equipment.

"Price-fixing strikes at the heart of a free market economy and injures the interests of consumers, business, and government agencies," Cuccinelli said.

"Our settlement sends an international signal that we will not tolerate this behavior and ensures that those who were overcharged will be compensated."

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