Marylanders may be due $5 coupons from Nintendo.


April 10, 1991|By Liz Atwood | Liz Atwood,Evening Sun Staff

Nintendo of America Inc., the distributor of Nintendo video games, has agreed to give $25 million in coupons to consumers nationwide and pay $3 million in cash to settle a price-fixing case initiated by investigators in Maryland and New York.

Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr., said today that some 200,000 Marylanders who bought Nintendo 8-bit consoles between June 1, 1988 and Dec. 31, 1990, will be entitled to $5 coupons that will be good toward the purchase of Nintendo games, the most popular of which are the "Mario Brothers" games. The state also will share the $3 million cash settlement with the money going to the state's general fund, and receive an additional $100,000 to cover the cost of the investigation, he said.

The charges against Nintendo, filed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan, allege that the company solicited and obtained agreements from retailers not to discount the price of its games below its suggested retail price.

"The Nintendo settlements show what the states and federal enforcement agencies can accomplish for consumers when they pool their resources," Curran said at press conference in Washington with officials from New York and the Federal Trade Commission.

The case marks the fourth time that Maryland has been part of a successful price-fixing investigation. Two weeks ago, Mitsubishi Electronics America Inc. agreed to refund $7.95 million to consumers nationwide.

L Nintendo denied that it had engaged in any illegal activity.

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