IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
1. The United States of America and the defendant, National Turtle Farmers & Shippers Association, Inc., hereby enter into the following plea agreement pursuant to Rule 11(e) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure (Fed. R. Crim. P.). This plea agreement arises from the federal grand jury investigation of violations of federal criminal laws in the turtle industry in Louisiana.
2. The defendant will waive indictment pursuant to Fed. R. Crim. P. 7(b) and plead guilty to a one-count criminal information charging it with conspiring to fix, maintain and stabilize the price of turtles in restraint of interstate and foreign trade and commerce in violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act, 15 U.S.C. ï½§ 1. The defendant understands that the maximum penalty that may be imposed for this violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act is a fine in an amount equal to the largest of: (a) $10,000,000; (b) twice the gross pecuniary gain derived from the crime; or (c) twice the gross pecuniary loss caused to the victims of the crime (18 U.S.C. ï½§ 3571).
3.Pursuant to Fed. R. Crim. P. 11(e)(1)(c), the United States and the defendant agree that a fine of $25,000 is the appropriate disposition of the charge in this case.
4.The United States and the Defendant understand that the Court retains complete discretion to accept or reject the disposition provided for in paragraph 3 of this plea agreement. In the event that the Court rejects the agreed upon disposition, this entire agreement shall be rendered null and void and the defendant will be free to withdraw its guilty plea pursuant to Fed. R. Crim. P. 11(e)(4).
5. The defendant agrees it will fully and candidly cooperate with the United States in the prosecution of this case, the conduct of this federal grand jury or other federal grand jury investigations involving the turtle industry and any litigation or other proceedings arising or resulting therefrom to which the United States is a party. The defendant shall use its best efforts to secure the full and candid cooperation of all of its officers and members who may have knowledge that would be of assistance to any federal investigation involving the turtle industry.
6. In consideration for the defendant's full and continuing cooperation, as described above, the United States agrees not to bring further criminal charges against the defendant under the federal antitrust statutes (15 U.S.C. ï½§ 1, et seq.), the mail or wire fraud statutes (18 U.S.C. ï½§ï½§ 1341, 1343), the federal conspiracy statute (18 U.S.C. ï½§ 371), the false claims statutes (18 U.S.C. ï½§ï½§ 286-287), the false statement statute (18 U.S.C. ï½§ 1001), or under any other criminal statute that prohibits any act also prohibited by any of the aforesaid statutes, for any act or offense committed prior to the execution of this agreement, which was undertaken in furtherance of any conspiracy, combination or scheme to fix, maintain and stabilize the price of turtles.
7. The United States and the defendant agree that other than the foregoing, the United States has made no promises to, or agreements with, the defendant, and that this plea agreement constitutes the entire agreement between the United States and the defendant, concerning the disposition of the criminal charge in this case.