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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

NORTHERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS

LUBBOCK DIVISION



UNITED STATES OF AMERICA    

                  v.

RONAL G. SKELTON,

                  Defendant.


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Criminal No.: 5-95CR0068-C

Filed: [9/13/95]

Violation: 15 U.S.C. § 1

Judge Cummings

INFORMATION

The United States of America, acting through its attorneys, charges:

I

DESCRIPTION OF THE OFFENSE

1. Ronal G. Skelton is hereby made a defendant on the charge stated below.

2. Beginning at least as early as July 1990 and continuing thereafter until at least the Fall of 1991, the exact dates being unknown to the United States, the defendant and others entered into and engaged in a combination and conspiracy to suppress and restrain competition by fixing prices for the sale of wholesale plumbing supplies sold by defendant and co-conspirators from places of business located in Lubbock, Texas, in unreasonable restraint of interstate trade and commerce in violation of Section One of the Sherman Act (15 U.S.C. § 1).

II

DEFENDANT AND CO-CONSPIRATORS

3. During the period covered by this Information, the defendant was Vice-President of Clowe & Cowan, Inc., and was engaged in the sale and distribution of wholesale plumbing supplies in Lubbock, Texas. The defendant's duties included establishing the price of wholesale plumbing supplies sold by Clowe & Cowan's Lubbock, Texas branch.

4. Various corporations and individuals, not made defendants in this Information, participated as co-conspirators in the offense charged and performed acts and made statements in furtherance of it.

5. Whenever in this Information reference is made to any act, deed, or transaction of any corporation, the allegation means that the corporation engaged in the act, deed, or transaction by or through its officers, directors, employees, agents, or other representatives while they were actively engaged in the management, direction, control, or transaction of its business or affairs.

III

THE CONSPIRACY

6. The charged combination and conspiracy consisted of a continuing agreement, understanding, and concert of action among the defendant and co-conspirators, a substantial term of which was to fix prices of wholesale plumbing supplies sold by wholesale plumbing suppliers located in Lubbock, Texas.

7. For the purpose of forming and carrying out the charged combination and conspiracy, the defendant and co-conspirators performed the following acts, among others, in the Northern District of Texas:

  1. discussed prices being charged for wholesale plumbing supplies;

  2. agreed to fix prices for wholesale plumbing supplies; and

  3. fixed prices for wholesale plumbing supplies, as agreed.

IV

TRADE AND COMMERCE

8. During the period covered by this Information, substantial quantities of wholesale plumbing supplies were purchased by the defendant and co-conspirators from manufacturers located outside the State of Texas and transported into the State of Texas for sale to customers.

9. The business activities of the defendant and co-conspirators that are the subject of this Information were within the flow of, and substantially affected, interstate trade and commerce.

V

JURISDICTION AND VENUE

10. The combination and conspiracy charged in this Information was formed and carried out, in part, within the Northern District of Texas, Lubbock Division, within the five years preceding the filing of this Information.

ALL IN VIOLATION OF TITLE 15 U.S.C. § 1.

DATED this ______ day of _______________, 1995.



_______________/s/________________
GARY R. SPRATLING
Acting Assistant Attorney General
Antitrust Division

_______________/s/________________
ALAN A. PASON
Chief, Dallas Office
Antitrust Division






_______________/s/________________
PAUL E. COGGINS
United States Attorney
Northern District of Texas

_______________/s/________________
WILLIAM C. MCMURREY



_______________/s/________________
GLENN A. HARRISON

Attorneys
Antitrust Division
U.S. Department of Justice
Thanksgiving Tower
1601 Elm Street, Suite 4950
Dallas, Texas 75201-4717
Telephone: (214) 655-2700