Case Details

Year Initiated/Committed


Year Resolved


Settlement Amount

$1.3 million


U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan

Docket Number


Lead State


Participating States



C.R. Equipment Sales, Inc., James Bigelow; Great Lakes Coach Sales, Inc., Robert Haithwaite; Hoekstra Truck Equipment
Company, Inc. , John Hoekstra; McFadden Corporation, Squires School & Commercial Equipment Sales, Inc., Howard Messenger; Ride Equipment, Inc., Frederic Kelly;
Wolverine Transportation, Inc., Don Picmann.

Case Description

After federal guilty pleas by school bus companies. plaintiff state filed suit on behalf of 545 Michigan school districts claiming that conspiracy and collusion between school bus distributors resulted in the schools paying millions of dollars more for school
buses than necessary. The complaint alleged that during the 1970s and 1980s, the distributors communicated to decide among themselves how much they would each bid on school bus contracts and who would
win a contract in a particular geographic area. According to the complaint, the conspiracy usually allowed the bus distributor that won a school bus contract in one year to be the winner the next year. The allocation of school districts or territories occasionally changed among competitors to satisfy their conspiratorial aims of maximizing profits, the complaint alleged. Under the settlement, the defendants paid $1.3 million in damages to the affected districts. In addition to the damages,
the defendants agreed to permanent injunctions to prevent future violations of antitrust laws and/or implementation of antitrust compliance programs.