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First online publication of oil price fixing US lawsuit against Shell, BP & Statoil

Screen Shot 2013-05-17 at 01.06.41This action arises from Defendants’ unlawful combination, agreement and conspiracy to fix and restrain trade in, and intentional manipulation of North Sea Brent Crude Oil (“Brent Crude oil”) and the prices of Brent Crude oil futures contracts…: Defendants deliberately reported inaccurate, misleading and false information regarding Brent Crude oil prices to Platts…

By John Donovan

You may have seen reference on this website to the class action lawsuit launched in the USA by Prime International Trading, Ltd against Royal Dutch Shell, BP and Statoil, for alleged oil price-fixing.

We are the first to provide free access to the relevant CLASS ACTION COMPLAINT – ALL 53 pages

Searchable version can be supplied by email on request to john@shellnews.net

The proceedings were issued on 22 May 2013.

Some extracts:

1. This action arises from Defendants’ unlawful combination, agreement and conspiracy to fix and restrain trade in, and intentional manipulation of North Sea Brent Crude Oil (“Brent Crude oil”) and the prices of Brent Crude oil futures contracts traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange (“NYMEX”) and the Intercontinental Exchange (“‘ICE”) during the period of at least 2002 through the present (the “Class Period”), in violation of the Commodity Exchange Act….2. Defendants deliberately reported inaccurate, misleading and false information regarding Brent Crude oil prices to Platts, a unit of McGraw Hill Financial Inc.,and the leading global provider of spot and contract pricing for the physical and financially settled derivatives Brent Crude oil markets. Platts’ Brent Crude oil prices are used to price and settle physical floating Brent Crude oil deals under long-term contracts on a physical (spot) basis, and to settle Brent Crude oil derivatives contracts, including NYMEX and ICE Brent Crude oil futures contracts. False reporting of Brent Crude oil prices to Platts thereby undermines the entire ‘pricing structure for the Brent Crude oil market.

6. On May 17,2013, the U.K. Serious Fraud Office announced that it was “urgently reviewing” the European Commission’s allegations of price-fixing in the oil markets and determining whether to accept the case for “criminal investigation.” That same day, the United States Senate called for the U.S. Department of Justice to join the European Commission investigation.

78. Due to Defendants’ fraudulent concealment, any applicable statute of limitations affecting or limiting the rights of action by Plaintiff or members of the Class has been tolled during the period of such fraudulent concealment.

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