According to federal prosecutors, starting around January 2000 through roughly September 2010, William W. Lord, the owner of Chef’s Choice Mesquite Charcoal, Carpinteria, CA, entered into a conspiracy with a Los Angeles-area and a separate San Francisco-area mesquite charcoal distributor. The three competitors allegedly agreed to refrain from competing for the sale of mesquite charcoal to each other’s customers in order to maintain current mesquite charcoal prices and to retain their respective customers.
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