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In re Dynamic Random Access Memory Antitrust Litig.

United States District Court for the Northern District of California

June 1, 2007, Decided

No. M 02-1486 PJH

Opinion

 [*1082]  ORDER GRANTING IN PART AND DENYING IN PART DEFENDANTS' MOTIONS FOR JUDGMENT ON THE PLEADINGS

Defendants' motions for judgment on the pleadings came on for hearing on December 6, 2006 before this court. Plaintiffs, indirect [**31]  purchasers ("plaintiffs"), appeared through their counsel, Allan Steyer, Josef D. Cooper, Tracy B. Kirkham, Daniel E. Gustafson, Christopher L. Lebsock, Terry Gross, Michael P. Lehman, Francis O. Scarpula, Daniel J. Mogin, and Jill M. Manning. Defendants appeared through their counsel, Julian Brew, Kenneth R. O'Rourke, Peter Nemerovski, Joshua Stambaugh, Jonathan Houden, Ronald C. Redcay, Joel S. Sanders, Steven H. Bergman, Andrew P. Deshazo, and Alejandro Steyer. Having read all the papers submitted and carefully considered the relevant legal authority, the court hereby GRANTS the, motions for judgment on the pleadings in part and DENIES the motions for judgment on the pleadings in part, for the reasons stated at the hearing, and as follows.

BACKGROUND

The actions before the court are part of a larger antitrust MDL action, in which plaintiffs generally allege a horizontal price-fixing conspiracy carried out by numerous defendants, in violation of various state and federal antitrust laws.

Plaintiffs in the instant action before the court allege that they indirectly purchased dynamic random access memory ("DRAM") from defendants. 1 DRAM is a type of semiconductor chip [**32]  used in computers and other electronic equipment. Defendants are either foreign corporations, or U.S. subsidiaries of foreign corporations, who manufacture and sell DRAM in the United States. 2 

 [*1083]  Specifically, plaintiffs - on behalf of themselves [**33]  and all others similarly situated - allege that they either (1) indirectly purchased DRAM from one or more of the defendants for use in manufacturing electronic devices for resale; or (2) indirectly purchased DRAM from one or more of the defendants for end use and not for resale. See Petro Class Action Complaint ("Complaint"), PP 7-17. Regardless whether plaintiffs purchased DRAM for end use or for resale, plaintiffs allege that they were forced to pay artificially high prices for DRAM, as a result of defendants' unlawful conspiracy and agreement to raise, fix, maintain, and/or stabilize prices for DRAM in the United States. See, e.g., Complaint, PP 71, 74.

Plaintiffs' complaint, styled as a class action, alleges five causes of action against defendants: (1) violation of section 1 of the Sherman Act; (2) violation of the California Cartwright Act; (3) violation of California Business and Professions Code §§ 16720 et seq.; (4) violation of various state antitrust and unfair competition laws; and (5) violation of state consumer protection and unfair competition laws. See id. at PP 70-142. The latter two causes of action, however, are each in [**34]  turn comprised of numerous individual state law claims: the fourth cause of action alleges violations of 22 states' antitrust and unfair competition laws, and the fifth cause of action alleges violations of 22 states' consumer protection and unfair competition laws.

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516 F. Supp. 2d 1072 *; 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 44354 **; 2007-1 Trade Cas. (CCH) P75,736

In re DYNAMIC RANDOM ACCESS MEMORY (DRAM) ANTITRUST LITIGATION; This Document Relates to: All Indirect Purchaser Actions

Subsequent History: Request denied by In re Dynamic Random Access Memory Antitrust Litig., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 101249 (N.D. Cal., July 9, 2007)

Motion granted by In re Dynamic Random Access Memory Antitrust Litig., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 66785 (N.D. Cal., Aug. 17, 2007)

Prior History: In re Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM) Antitrust Litig., 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 20570 (N.D. Cal., Mar. 6, 2007)

CORE TERMS

antitrust, indirect, consumer, price-fixing, unfair, deceptive, tolling, conspiracy, persuasive, commerce, certification, enumerated, household, rubber, artificially, anticompetitive, electronic, fraudulent, targeted, duplicative, restrain, viable, tires, cure, speculative, misleading, chemicals, invoke, card, unconscionable

Civil Procedure, Judgments, Pretrial Judgments, Judgment on Pleadings, Defenses, Demurrers & Objections, Motions to Dismiss, Failure to State Claim, Antitrust & Trade Law, Private Actions, Standing, Requirements, Remedies, General Overview, Consumer Protection, Deceptive & Unfair Trade Practices, State Regulation, Regulated Practices, Special Proceedings, Class Actions, Governments, Legislation, Interpretation, Effect & Operation, Retrospective Operation