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It never ceases to surprise how tough the US Department of Justice can be in antitrust cases. But while some freight executives have seen severe – but relatively short – sentences, the five-year prison term (and $25,000 fine) handed out to Frank Peake, former president of Sea Star Line, suggests he was leading the way for a pretty serious breach of the law. Charged with a conspiracy to fix rates between the US and Puerto Rico, he worked with two other large shipping lines on the route to “stabilise and maintain rates and surcharges … and to rig bids”. Five other people received jail terms of between seven months and five years, while one vice-president from Crowley Liner Services has yet to stand trial.