By Nick Carey and Sanjana Shivdas
(Reuters) – General Motors Co. on Monday asked a U.S. federal judge to reinstate a racketeering lawsuit against Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (FCA), saying it has new information on foreign accounts used in an alleged bribery scheme involving its smaller rival and union leaders.
In its filing to U.S. District Judge Paul Borman, GM says the scheme, which it alleges occurred between FCA executives and former United Auto Workers (UAW) leaders, “is much broader and deeper than previously suspected or revealed as it involved FCA Group apparently using various accounts in foreign countries … to control corrupt individuals by compensating and corrupting those centrally involved in the scheme to harm GM.”
Last month, Borman threw out the racketeering lawsuit, saying the No. 1 U.S. automaker’s alleged injuries were not caused by FCA’s alleged violations.
GM alleged FCA bribed UAW officials over many years to corrupt the bargaining process and gain advantages, costing GM billions of dollars. GM was seeking “substantial damages” that one analyst said could have totaled at least $6 billion.
“These new facts warrant amending the court’s prior judgment, so we are respectfully asking the court to reinstate the case,” GM said in a statement.
“FCA will continue to defend itself vigorously and pursue all available remedies in response to GM’s attempts to resurrect this groundless lawsuit,” FCA said in a statement.
In affidavits accompanying GM’s filing, attorneys for the automaker said “reliable information concerning the existence of foreign bank accounts” used in the alleged scheme had only come to light recently.
“The UAW is unaware of any allegations regarding illicit off-shore accounts as claimed,” by GM, the UAW said in a statement. “If GM actually has substantive information supporting its allegations, we ask that they provide it to us so we can take all appropriate actions.”
(Reporting by Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber, Aurora Ellis and Steve Orlofsky)