Freight railroads deny price-fixing accusations

AP News
Posted: Jun 08, 2011 1:49 PM
Freight railroads deny price-fixing accusations

Union Pacific and Burlington Northern Santa Fe are defending their pricing practices after Oxbow Mining filed a federal lawsuit against the freight railroads.

Oxbow said in the lawsuit filed Tuesday that the railroads conspired to raise prices and worked to avoid direct competition with each other to keep rates high. Oxbow Chairman Bill Koch says the western railroads have been gouging customers.

UP spokesman Tom Lange said Wednesday the Omaha-based railroad denies the allegations and says the lawsuit includes several factual errors.

Lange says Oxbow has been threatening to file a lawsuit if UP didn't agree to significant concessions.

BNSF spokesman Steve Forsberg wouldn't comment on the lawsuit itself Tuesday, but he defended the Fort Worth, Texas, railroad's business practices and said BNSF has not conspired to violate any law.