Takata Executives Charged in Toyota Parts Price-Fix Price

Three Takata Corp. executives agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix prices for seatbelts sold to automakers including Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Co., the U.S. said.

The three were charged with participating in a conspiracy to rig bids and have agreed to serve prison sentences of 14 to 19 months, the Justice Department said today in a statement.

The charges stem from an investigation into price-fixing in the auto-parts industry. In September, nine Japanese companies agreed to plead guilty and pay $740 million in fines for their roles in conspiracies to fix prices of more than 30 products sold to carmakers.

The three Takata executives -- Yasuhiko Ueno, Saburo Imamiya and Yoshinobu Fujino -- agreed to cooperate in the investigation. Takata, based in Tokyo, agreed to pay a $71.3 million criminal fine in October.

Besides Toyota and Honda, the seatbelts were sold to Nissan Motor Co., Subaru and Mazda Motor Corp., the Justice Department said.

The cases are U.S. v. Ueno, 13-cr-20869; U.S. v. Imamiya, 13-cr-20871; U.S. v. Fujino, 13-cr-20870, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan.