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United States v. Aluminum Co. America.

Law Dictionary
CASE BRIEFS

Law Dictionary

Featuring Black's Law Dictionary 2nd Ed.
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International Law Keyed to Damrosche

Citation. United States v. Aluminum Co. of America, 148 F.2d 416, 1945 U.S. App. LEXIS 4091, 65 U.S.P.Q. (BNA) 6, 1945 Trade Cas. (CCH) P57,342 (2d Cir. N.Y. Mar. 12, 1945)

Brief Fact Summary. A suit against the Aluminum Co. of America (D) and Aluminum Limited (D), a Canadian corporation formed to take over the properties of Aluminum Co. of America (D) outside the United States, by the United States (P) on the premise of contravening the Sherman Act by the participation of each company in a foreign cartel called the Alliance.


Synopsis of Rule of Law. Any state may impose liabilities even upon persons not within its allegiance, for conduct outside its borders that has consequences within its borders that the state reprehends.


Facts. A Swiss corporation called Alliance, which was a foreign cartel was formed by an agreement entered into in 1931 among a French corporation, two German corporations, one Swiss corporation, one British corporation and Aluminum Limited (D). Aluminum Limited (D) was a Canadian corporation formed to take over properties of the Aluminum Co. of America (D) outside the United States. The agreement in 1932 stipulated for the issuance of shares to signatories and a quota of production for each share, the shareholders to be limited to the quantity measured by the number of shares held by each. Alliance was at liberty to sell at any price it chose. No shareholder was to obtain or sell at any aluminum produced by anyone not a shareholder. The system of unconditional quotas was abandoned in 1936 and this was substituted with a system of royalties. The shareholders agreed that imports into the United States should be included in the quotas. Thereafter, a suit was filed against the Aluminum Co. of America (D) and Aluminum Limited (D) by the United States (P) for the violation of the Sherman Act that prohibits every contract, combination, or other conspiracy in restraint of trade among several states or with foreign nations. The district court found that the 1931 and 1936 agreements did not suppress or restrain the exportation of aluminum to the United States (P) and that America (D) was not a party to the Alliance. The United States (P) appealed.


Issue. May a state impose liabilities even upon persons not within its allegiance, for the conduct outside its borders that has consequences within its borders?


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