Two e-commerce companies and their top executives pled guilty to conspiring to fix prices for customized promotional products sold online to U.S. customers. On August 7, 2017, Zaappaaz Inc. (d/b/a WB Promotions Inc., Wrist-Band.com, and Customlanyard.net) pled guilty to conspiring to price fix, and its President Azim Makanojiya, pled guilty to criminally violating the Sherman Act. According to the charges, conspirators used social media and encrypted messages to engage in illegal agreements to fix the prices of products sold online. Zaappaaz agreed to a $1.9 million fine; Makanojiya faces up to ten years in prison and fine of $1 million for his alleged violation of the Sherman Act. United States v. Zaappaaz, Inc., 4:17-cr-00477 (S.D. Tex.).
On August 22, 2017, Custom Wristbands Inc., as well as its top executive, Christopher Angeles, pled guilty to conspiring to fix prices for customized promotional products. The defendants used text messaging and other online messaging services to engage in illegal agreements to fix the prices of products. Custom Wristbands agreed to pay over $409,000 in criminal fines. Angeles was charged with violating the Sherman Act, which carries a maximum sentence of ten years in prison and up to a $1 million fine. United States v. Custom Wristbands, Inc., 4:17-cr-00509 (S.D. Tex.).