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Google Hit With $2.7B Fine in EU's 'Worst-Kept Secret'

Competition chief Margrethe Vestager says tech giant violated antitrust rules

(Newser) - Don't mess with Margrethe Vestager, even if you're Google. The tech giant found that out Tuesday when, in what Bloomberg calls "the worst-kept secret in Brussels," Europe's competition chief hit it with a $2.7 billion antitrust fine—the largest ever in this kind of... More »

City Will Pay People Sent to Jail Over Court Fines

The mostly homeless individuals will get $125 per day in jail

(Newser) - In a rare move, Colorado Springs has agreed to pay dozens of people, most of them homeless, who were sent to jail because they couldn't afford to pay fines for minor offenses like panhandling and jaywalking, the AP reports. The $103,000 deal requires the city to pay up... More »

Ferguson Judge Behind Fines Scheme Owes $170K

Ronald Brockmeyer, 70, is also accused of fixing tickets

(Newser) - A Ferguson, Missouri judge first got in hot water when the Justice Dept. accused him of fixing traffic tickets and unfairly punishing residents over unpaid fees. But 70-year-old Ronald Brockmeyer has another problem: more than $170,000 in outstanding taxes, the Guardian reports. According to tax liens filed by the... More »

JPMorgan Will Pay $920M in London Whale Fines

Company will admit wrongdoing

(Newser) - JPMorgan Chase & Co. will pay $920 million and admit wrongdoing in a settlement with US and British regulators over the $6 billion "London Whale" trading loss last year that tarnished the bank's reputation. The UK's Financial Conduct Authority fined the company $220 million, while the British... More »

Amex Refunding $85M in Late-Fee Settlements

The company broke laws 'at all stages of the game'

(Newser) - American Express is paying $112.5 million in refunds and fines to settle regulators' accusations that it charged unlawful late fees and deceived customers to pressure them to pay off old debts or buy extra credit card services. The company agreed to the settlements announced today by four federal agencies,... More »

Saggy Pants Ban a Profitable Move for Georgia Town

Waistlines are down, cash is up

(Newser) - In Albany, Georgia, saggy pants are a sartorial faux pas—and quite the little moneymaker. On Nov. 23 of last year, the city instituted a ban on anyone wearing pants (or skirts!) more than three inches below the hips. Since then, 187 citations have been issued, raking in $3,... More »

Aussies to Make Obnoxious Swearing Illegal

Victoria police will be able to slap the potty-mouthed with fines

(Newser) - Don't get too vulgar in Victoria—it could cost you up to $257. Australia's second most populous state is poised to approve a law that will give police the power to fine those who utter obnoxious obscenities in public, reports the Sydney Morning Herald . The attorney general says... More »

American Airlines Faces Record $24.2M Fine

FAA says it didn't correct faulty wiring

(Newser) - The FAA is apparently trying to prove it can't be bulled by the airlines. It plans to fine American Airlines $24.2 million—that's more than twice the size of the current record fine—over maintenance violations, reports USA Today . The agency alleges that American flew thousands of unsafe flights... More »

Fraud Fine Is Chump Change for Goldman

$500M penalty amounts to just 2 weeks of profits

(Newser) - The SEC is boasting that the $550 million settlement it agreed to with Goldman Sachs is the "largest-ever penalty paid by a Wall Street firm." That may be true, but that doesn't mean it's actually going to chasten Goldman. Top put things in perspective, Pro Publica notes that... More »

Price of Adultery? 4 Buffalo and a Pig

Malaysian court gives cheating couple a beastly fine

(Newser) - A Malaysian tribal court has ordered two lovers to pay a fine of four buffalo and a pig after they were found guilty of having an illicit affair. The Star newspaper says the Native Court on Borneo island ruled last week that the man and woman must compensate their communities... More »

NFL Fines Titans Owner $250K for Flipping Bird

Tennessee's Bud Adams dinged for 'detrimental' conduct

(Newser) - The NFL fined 86-year-old Tennessee Titans owner Bud Adams $250,000 for "conduct detrimental to the league"—namely, flipping the bird toward the Buffalo Bills' sideline in the waning moments of yesterday's 41-17 Tennessee victory. He later repeated the display on the field, the Tennessean reports. "I... More »

Overdue Books Return —51 Years Late

(Newser) - An Arizona high school librarian got the surprise of her career when she opened a package and found a letter from a former student, two books checked out in 1958—and a money order for $1,000 to cover the overdue-book fines. The books, Community of Living Things: Forests and ... More »

FAA Starts Own Balloon Boy Probe

Flight delays at Denver airport during caper could result in fines

(Newser) - The Federal Aviation Administration is the latest agency to start its own investigation of last week’s Colorado balloon circus, with authorities looking into delays at Denver International Airport during the craft’s flight. And while local law enforcement wants criminal charges against the Heene family, any FAA violations would... More »

Pfizer Pays Record $2.3B Fine for False Marketing

(Newser) - Pfizer will shell out $2.3 billion—a record for a health care fraud settlement—over deceptive marketing of its drugs, the Los Angeles Times reports. Pfizer and one of its subsidiaries marketed four drugs based on off-label uses specifically prohibited by the FDA. The settlement with the Justice Department... More »

SF Library Offers Amnesty to Tardy Book Borrowers

But each has to cough up an excuse

(Newser) - A book amnesty program in San Francisco has inspired many guilty returns and a few entertaining excuses, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. The city's public library offered tardy borrowers the chance to return items, fine-free, as long as they came with an excuse. Returning a record 29,228 items worth... More »

Sex at 80 MPH Not Cool With Norwegian Cops

(Newser) - A Norwegian man faces a stiff fine and driving ban for having sex behind the wheel, the AFP reports. Cops thought he was just speeding—about 80 mph in a 60 zone—until they pulled closer and found his view obstructed “because her back was in the way.”... More »

Siemens Will Pay $1.3B in Fines for Global Corruption

Company settles on US charges for $800M, shells out more over German accusations

(Newser) - German engineering conglomerate Siemens pleaded guilty today to an international pay-to-play scheme and will pay the US $800 million in fines, the Wall Street Journal reports. It will also give $528 million to the German government—adding to a $275 million payout last year. More »

Players Tackle 'Excessive' NFL Fines

Pros complain that crackdown on illegal hits is about money, not safety

(Newser) - The NFL players union is taking action on member complaints that the league has gone fine-happy this season, reports the Washington Post. Players charge that fines for illegal hits have become excessive. The union director is seeking a new system that would allow disgruntled players to appeal penalty decisions to... More »

American Airlines Faces $7M Fine for Safety Violations

(Newser) - American Airlines faces FAA fines of more than $7 million for a series of safety and maintenance violations and for deficiencies in its drug and alcohol testing, the Wall Street Journal reports. In proposing one of its biggest fines ever, the FAA accuses American of knowingly flying planes that needed... More »

Citigroup Will Buy Back $7B of Bad Debt, Pay $100M Fine

Deal with SEC, NY state seen as 'face-saving,' could mean more ahead

(Newser) - Citigroup has agreed to buy back $7 billion in risky debt it marketed to consumers as safe and equivalent to cash, Reuters reports. Today’s deal, struck with New York's attorney general and the SEC, also requires the bank to pay fines totaling $100 million, and reimburse customers who took... More »

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