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KAPLAN FOX & KILSHEIMER LLP FILES A CLASS ACTION AGAINST CHRISTIE'S AND SOTHEBY'S ALLEGING  PRICE FIXING OF AUCTION COMMISSIONS

New York, New York B February 3, 2000: Kaplan Fox & Kilsheimer LLP has filed a class action lawsuit against Christie's International, Sotheby's Holdings, Inc., and Sotheby's Inc. on behalf of a seller of art through their auctions.  Plaintiff brings this action on behalf of all persons who sold art, jewelry, musical instruments, books, furniture and all other items through Christie's and Sotheby's auctions during the period March 1995 through the present, and on behalf of purchasers of such items during the period January 1, 1992 through the present.

For nearly thirty years members of Kaplan Fox have prosecuted complex antitrust litigation, both as attorneys of the firm and as attorneys for the United States Justice Department.  Kaplan Fox lawyers have been at the forefront of several of the most important private antitrust actions over the past three decades, having been appointed by federal and state courts as co-lead counsel or a member of an executive committee in numerous antitrust cases.

In the present case, plaintiff alleges that commencing on or about January of 1992, Christie's and Sotheby's conspired to fix the price of commissions they charged to buyers at 15% of the first $50,000 of merchandise purchased and 10% of any amount over $50,000.  Plaintiff further alleges that on or about March 1995, Christie's and Sotheby's conspired to fix the prices of the commissions paid by sellers.  At that time, both auction houses adopted identical detailed sliding-scale commission rates to the sellers.  The action was filed following Christie's public admission that it has supplied evidence of the price fixing of auction commissions to the United States Justice Department which has been investigating anti-competitive practices in connection with Christie's and Sotheby's auctions.

If you have any questions concerning this action or have any information concerning Christie's and Sotheby's commission practices, please contact Robert N. Kaplan or Donald R. Hall of Kaplan Fox at (800) 290-1952 or (212) 687-1980 or by email at mail@KaplanFox.com.  If you would like detailed information about our firm, please visit our website at www.KaplanFox.com. 

Robert N. Kaplan, Esq.
Donald R. Hall, Esq.
Kaplan Fox & Kilsheimer LLP
(800) 290-1952
(212) 687-1980
Fax: (212) 687-7714
E-mail address:
mail@KaplanFox.com

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