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Claxton Poultry Farms indicted for price fixing and bid rigging, faces $100 million fine

Christian Fernsby |
A federal grand jury in Denver, Colorado, returned an indictment charging Norman W. Fries Inc., dba Claxton Poultry Farms (Claxton), headquartered in Claxton, Georgia, with participating in a nationwide conspiracy to fix prices and rig bids for broiler chicken products.

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Topics: CLAXTON POULTRY FARMS   

According to court documents, from at least as early as 2012 until at least 2019, Claxton and co-conspirators, including current President Mikell Fries and current Vice President Scott Brady, conspired to suppress and eliminate competition for sales of broiler chicken products, which are raised for human consumption and sold to grocers and restaurants.

Fries and Brady are among 10 individuals charged in a superseding indictment in October 2020 for their roles in the conspiracy. Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation, a major broiler chicken producer based in Greeley, Colorado, pleaded guilty and was sentenced in February 2021 to pay a criminal fine over $107 million for its role in the conspiracy.

Claxton is charged with a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act. If convicted, Claxton faces a statutory maximum fine for corporations of $100 million. The maximum fine may be increased to twice the gain derived from the crime or twice the loss suffered by victims, if either of those amounts is greater than the statutory maximum fine.

A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after considering the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.


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