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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 10, 2020

Eastern District of Texas Announces Partnership with the Antitrust Division to Protect Competition in Marketplace

BEAUMONT, Texas – Today the Eastern District of Texas and the Antitrust Division announced charges against a former healthcare staffing company for conspiring to fix prices to the detriment of the American labor market.  Additionally, the Eastern District of Texas has recently joined the Antitrust Division in the Department of Justice Procurement Collusion Strike Force (PCSF).  Together, the Eastern District of Texas and the Antitrust Division will continue to pursue enforcement actions to promote competition and protect the marketplace.

           “Our District has been eager to partner with the Antitrust Division in protecting the marketplace, and today’s announcements are just the beginning of what we hope will be a terrific relationship,” said U.S. Attorney Stephen J. Cox. When I was at Main Justice, the Department filed an important amicus brief in a case arising in the Eastern District of Texas—the brief advised the Fifth Circuit on the application of antitrust law and patent law to promote innovation and spur competition in connection with standard essential patents,” said U.S. Attorney Stephen J. Cox.  “Later, when I became U.S. Attorney, we began to look for opportunities where the District could work together with the Antitrust Division on these and other important antitrust matters.  I am proud to announce that we joined the PCSF and that we are now assisting the Antitrust Division in a wage-fixing prosecution.  Stay tuned.  There is more to come.”

           The Eastern District of Texas has partnered with the Antitrust Division to indict Neeraj Jindal, 48, of Flower Mound, Texas.  As announced today, a federal grand jury charged Jindal, the former owner of a therapist staffing company, with wage fixing for his role in a conspiracy to fix prices by lowering the rates paid to physical therapists and physical therapist assistants in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area.  The indictment also charges Jindal with obstruction of the Federal Trade Commission’s separate investigation into this conduct.

           Last month, the Antitrust Division announced that the Eastern District of Texas would join the PCSF, which leads a coordinated national response to combat collusion, antitrust crimes, and related fraudulent schemes that undermine competition in government procurement, grant, and program funding.  The Eastern District of Texas has designated two Assistant U.S. Attorneys, Nathaniel Kummerfeld and Jonathan Hornok, to assist with the PCSF. 

           The PCSF is comprised of the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, multiple U.S. Attorneys’ Offices around the country, and close to 30 member agencies.  These agencies include the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Department of Justice, Office of Inspector General; the Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General; the U.S. Postal Service, Office of Inspector General; the Department of Defense, Office of Inspector General, Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS); the Air Force Office of Special Investigations; and the General Services Administration, Office of Inspector General.

           The PCSF has a publicly available website at www.Justice.gov/Procurement-Collusion-Strike-Force, where members of the public can review information about the federal antitrust laws and training programs, and report suspected criminal activity affecting public procurement. Individuals and companies are encouraged to contact the PCSF if they have information concerning anticompetitive conduct involving federal taxpayer dollars by emailing pcsf@usdoj.gov or filling out the PCSF anonymous complaint form, located on the PCSF website.

           Federal, state, and local agencies can also contact the PCSF at pcsf@usdoj.gov for any training needs or to report suspected antitrust violations.

Topic(s): 
Antitrust
Updated December 11, 2020