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Smith & Nephew reveals collusion attempt

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Smith & Nephew discloses July 31 that one of its independent sales representatives sent an email Oct. 28, 2005, to competitors seeking cooperation on pricing for hip and knee implants. The London-based firm, which has since severed its relationship with the rep, denies authorizing or acting upon the email. The price-fixing scheme likely prompted an investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice, which subpoenaed Smith & Nephew, Stryker, Johnson & Johnson/DePuy, Biomet and Zimmer in June for documents related to possible antitrust violations (1"The Gray Sheet" July 3, 2006, p. 8). A separate investigation by the U.S. attorney's office in Newark, N.J., pertaining to the relationship between orthopedics manufacturers and physicians is ongoing (2"The Gray Sheet" April 4, 2005, p. 3)...

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