الاثنين، 25 يوليو 2016

Uber engaged in 'fraudulent and arguably criminal conduct' says US judge hearing price fixing case

Uber hired a private investigator to run a background check on a plaintiff in a price fixing case against it
Uber hired a private investigator to run a background check on a plaintiff in a price fixing case against it
A federal judge in the US prevented Uber and its Chief Executive Travis Kalanick from using information obtained by an investigative firm in a background check of a plaintiff who brought a price-fixing lawsuit.
         
US District Judge Jed Rakoff in Manhattan said the firm, Ergo, "engaged in fraudulent and arguably criminal conduct".
The judge called it a "sad day" when a corporate defendant such as Uber feels compelled to hire unlicensed private investigators to probe a plaintiff and his lawyer.
Rakoff faulted the investigator for claiming to seek information about "up-and-coming researchers in environmental conservation," when the real purpose was more likely to intimidate Meyer or hurt his case over pricing practices at Uber, the ride-sharing service.
         
The judge said many of the documents it sought to protect "were intended to facilitate this fraudulent and arguably criminal activity."
Meyer accused Kalanick of illegally conspiring with Uber drivers to coordinate high "surge pricing" fares during periods of heavy demand, by agreeing to charge prices set by an algorithm in the Uber smartphone app for hailing rides.
         
Uber takes a share of revenue that drivers generate.