On April 17, 2008, Charles J. Gillespie, a former executive of Italy based Manuli Rubbers Industries SpA, pled guilty to participating in a conspiracy to rig bids, fix prices, and allocate market shares of marine hose in the United States. Mr. Gillespie also agreed to serve 12 months and one day in jail and pay a criminal fine of $20,000 as well as cooperate in the Department of Justice’s ongoing investigation.
Marine hose is a flexible rubber hose used to transfer oil between tankers and storage facilities. The cartel, that Mr. Gillespie was allegedly a part of, manipulated prices for hundreds of millions of dollars worth of marine hose worldwide. The conspiracy lasted from sometime in early 2000 to May 2007. Since May 2007, there have been eight foreign executives arrested in Houston and San Francisco and charged for their role in the marine hose cartel.