Air Cargo cartel class action set to land $38 million settlement

17 April 2014
Maurice Blackburn’s long-running air-cargo cartel class action is set to conclude, with a $38 million settlement reached with most respondents.

The price fixing class action began in 2007 and was taken up on behalf of purchasers of international airfreight services, including importers and exporters of products to and from Australia. 

The class action is in respect of an alleged cartel to fix the price of international airfreight services, specifically relating to fuel and security surcharges imposed by the airlines.

It is only the fourth cartel class action to be run in Australia, with all four of those cases run successfully by Maurice Blackburn Lawyers.

Class Actions Principal at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers, Brooke Dellavedova, says she is confident the settlement will be approved by the court.

"This case involved allegations of collusive conduct by many airlines, over a long period of time and in different parts of the world," Ms Dellavedova said.

"It has been a large, complex and difficult action, hard fought by the parties for seven years, so this is a significant victory for the businesses that we've been fighting this battle for.

"Without these actions, the businesses that we act for would have no opportunity for compensation, so we're happy to reach this point for them, and we know they're also pleased with the outcome.

"These major types of actions are important in ensuring better standards of business behaviour right throughout our corporate landscape, and they of course play a pivotal role in opening access to justice."

The proposed settlement is for the benefit of group members who registered with Maurice Blackburn last September to participate in any settlement.

The application for settlement approval will be heard by the Federal Court on 6 June 2014. The settlement is without admission of liability by respondents.