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Top German court rules leasing customers can sue for damages over truck cartel

Credit: REUTERS/FABIAN BIMMER

Adds Daimler Truck statement, background

KARLSRUHE, Germany, Dec 5 (Reuters) - Germany's highest court ruled on Tuesday that leasing customers can in principle claim damages over price fixing that took place among a cartel of leading European truckmakers between 1997 and 2011.

The Federal Court of Justice found that collusion on list prices led to inflated leasing rates, confirming a 2021 ruling by a lower regional court in a case brought by a customer of what was then Daimler AG.

After the spin-off of the truck business from Daimler AG, liabilities linked to the cartel lies with Daimler Truck DTGGe.DE, said the company.

The court did not give a ruling, which applies to Germany, on the amount of damages, which is to be set in separate proceedings.

Daimler Trucks said it was awaiting the full ruling with its reasoning in the next few weeks and declined to comment in detail until then.

The complainant, a building materials company which had leased trucks, took legal action against Daimler AG for compensation after a 2016 cartel ruling by the European Commission.

The Commission had fined Daimler, Sweden's Volvo, Paccar's DAF Trucks and Italy's Iveco a record 2.9 billion euros for price fixing and coordinating on the introduction of new emission technology.

The Commission said at the time it had not fined MAN as it had revealed the existence of the cartel.

(Reporting by Ursula Knapp, Writing by Madeline Chambers, Editing by Rachel More)

((rachel.more@thomsonreuters.com;))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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