WASHINGTON (May 2)—Syndial S.p.A., the former Enichem S.p.A., has agreed to plead guilty and pay a $9 million criminal fine for participating in an international conspiracy to fix prices in the polychloroprene rubber market, according to the Department of Justice.
Under a plea agreement, which must be approved by the U.S. District Court in San Francisco—where the case was tried—Syndial agreed to assist the government in its ongoing polychloroprene rubber investigation. Syndial sells polychloroprene rubber under its Butaclor brand name.
Syndial was charged with violating Section 1 of the Sherman Act, which carries a maximum fine of $10 million for corporations.
Syndial is the second producer of chloroprene rubber to agree to a guilty plea in the ongoing price-fixing investigation. In March DuPont Dow Elastomers L.L.C. pleaded guilty and was sentenced to pay an $84 million criminal fine.
The Justice Department said the U.S. market for chloroprene rubber—used in a variety of products, including tires, adhesives, coated fabrics, furniture and shoes—is about $200 million annually.