Delays likely in Cadbury damages case against packaging giant Amcor
Slated to begin this week in the Federal Court, the case is not likely to kick-off until later this year following a request by Cadbury for leave to amend details in its multi-million dollar claim.
A report in Australian paper The Age states all parties concerned in the case will learn this week if Cadbury's request for changes is permissable, and whether the trial will be delayed until the summer of this year.
In 2004, packaging firm Amcor blew the whistle on a price-fixing cartel in the cardboard-box market.
In return for immunity from prosecution, Amcor provided Australia's competition watchdog, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, with details relating to the cartel.
As a result, in November 2007 Amcor's co-colluder, Visy Industries, was fined A$36 million (€20.4m) by the country's Federal Court for a range of contraventions to the Trade Practices Act.
Cadbury started proceedings against Amcor, claiming damages of more than A$120m (€68m) from the packaging firm for losses allegedly suffered as a result of the price fixing for cardboard boxes and PET plastic bottles.
The firm is looking to obtain the amount it was overcharged for its packaging materials while the cartel was operating.
Earlier this year, the confectionery giant altered its statement of claim - a document filed with the Court in which the plaintiff sets out the facts to support their case - after gaining access in March to a total of 111 witness statements that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission had filed in 2007.
In 2006, when Cadbury filed the action, Amcor commented that it would "be vigorously defending these allegations". The packaging firm added that it regretted a "valued customer has issued proceedings of this nature and hopes the dispute can be resolved amicably".