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BA Directors plead to be prosecuted

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BA Directors plead to be prosecuted

Old 21st May 2007, 12:54
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I fail to see how one company can be accused of running a price fixing scam on it's own, others would surely need to be complicit for it to work.
Yes, that's the rather puzzling thing about this affair. Unless the 'crime' is supposed to be 'attempted price fixing', i.e. the BA managers involved rang up Virgin to suggest they get together to agree on a surcharge and Virgin passed this straight on to the authorities... But if Virgin didn't collude with BA then BA itself didn't get any benefit (whatever that might be), so it would be difficult for anyone to sue BA as there was no actual fixing. If Virgin did go along with it, then they are just as guilty.

Can't have it both ways.
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Old 21st May 2007, 13:55
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4 airlines are under investigation. UA, AA, BA and Virgin. BA have admitted, Virgin dobbed them in it appears to get immunity. Other 2 nothing yet established.
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Old 21st May 2007, 14:01
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If someone came to you with an illegal proposition, which you didn't want anything to do with, perhaps you might feel obliged to inform the authorities in order to disassociate yourself from the proposition?
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Old 21st May 2007, 14:57
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Originally Posted by manintheback
4 airlines are under investigation. UA, AA, BA and Virgin. BA have admitted, Virgin dobbed them in it appears to get immunity. Other 2 nothing yet established.
This would appear to also be a list of the airlines with the longstanding rights into Heathrow under Bermuda2, to the exclusion of other US carriers. My oh my, what a coincidence that it is just the airlines who can be screwed into supporting the opening up of Heathrow, in exchange now for "immunity" from trumped-up charges.

If you think the Bermuda2 change is completely agreed and sorted out, it isn't.

And if you think the collusion allegation is like Third-World dictators trying to push their way around, it is.

Meanwhile over in say Germany the transatlantic market is in the grip of a Lufthansa-United-Air Canada Star Alliance collusion on fares, capacity and codesharing which makes what is being talked about here look like chickenfeed.
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Old 21st May 2007, 15:22
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If someone came to you with an illegal proposition, which you didn't want anything to do with, perhaps you might feel obliged to inform the authorities in order to disassociate yourself from the proposition?
Most definitely. But the accusations are for collusion, not 'talking about colluding'. It most certainly takes (at least) two to tango here.

UA, AA, BA and Virgin.
As others have pointed out, how does this stand with respect to airline alliances? AA & BA are in the same one - they sell tickets on each others' services and coordinate routes, etc. Making surcharges similar would seem to be an elementary part of the plan?

Virgin dobbed them in it appears to get immunity.
Why would they need immunity if they hadn't been involved in something illegal? If BA had got wind of the imminent 'dobbing' and 'fessed up a day earlier, would Virgin be in the dock now? I don't think 'plea bargaining' works the same way in the UK as the US. You can't get off a speeding fine by a) admitting it or b) pointing a finger at someone else...
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Old 21st May 2007, 15:51
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Some of you appear to have very short memories. Have you forgotten the dirty tricks that BA played some 15 years ago on Virgin when King and Co did their level best to put Virgin out of business?

If you have forgotten or never knew in the first place, then I can recommend the book "Dirty Tricks" by Martyn Gregory.

Anyone in Virgin who can dish some dirt on BA is not going to hesitate for more than one second to shop them.
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Old 21st May 2007, 15:59
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How about a refund to passengers for the all of the additional charges that were imposed as a result of collusion.
There appears to be some naff reporting in the linked articles - as I understood this case, the surcharges related solely to cargo surcharged - the passenger charges were never the subject of this particular investigation.
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Old 21st May 2007, 16:01
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Anyone in Virgin who can dish some dirt on BA is not going to hesitate for more than one second to shop them.
Yes, but it's a big risk when you involve the Company in something like that - it's not "They did this to us!", it's more "We did this together..."
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Old 21st May 2007, 16:04
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Do you not think that the Grinning Pullover and his lawyers would have thought that out most carefully before acting?
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Old 21st May 2007, 16:33
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JW411 we do have short memories but thankfully you keep reminding us.
I think RB is a shrewder man than to allow 15 years to pass before getting his own back. I don't think it would have mattered which airline it had have been, Virgin would have responded the same regarding what happened here (not the dirty tricks from 15years ago).
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Old 21st May 2007, 17:55
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WHBM, a little research on Google does it for me, every time!
This from Channel 4 News of the 11th May 2007
"Budget airlines are fuelling demand, creating new routes and getting people on to those planes," said Alice Bows, an aviation researcher at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research.'"It's also mainly the middle classes who are flying, so it's not as though they're opening things up to a new field."
Fuel costs make up a higher proportion of the operating costs of a budget airline - around 20 per cent, rather than the 10 per cent typical for a flag carrier. This creates extra incentive to reduce the fuel used - which, Bows says, is more of a "happy accident" than something that should be heralded as too much of an eco-triumph.
The airline (easyjet) also sells a relatively high proportion of those seats - its load factor (percentage of seats sold) was 84.8 per cent in 2006.
This compares to an average of 68.3 per cent (in 2005) for members of the Association of European Airlines, a 31-strong body that includes British Airways and Virgin Atlantic.
'
Maybe this has something to do with the fact that BA et al have to resort to such spin and revenue squeezing whilst the Locos just get on with making money, even with double the proportion of fuel in their DOCs as the inefficent 'Flag Carrier'.
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Old 21st May 2007, 20:58
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Ignorance is certainly not bliss
In the case of your posts Tristar it obviously is. You can't see past your BA grudge, even when themaninblack pointed out that your post was drivel you carried on trying to justify it, rather than accept you made a mistake.

Next time you're about to make a post, especially in relation to BA, why not go away for 10 minutes or so to calm down and come back and post something based on fact and rationale, rather than bias and vitriol
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Old 22nd May 2007, 06:23
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If you have forgotten or never knew in the first place, then I can recommend the book "Dirty Tricks" by Martyn Gregory.

JW411...Can I "recommend" the book "Branson" by Tom Bower. Read it and take a balance.....remove the blinkers first and open your mind!! All is not as the Virgin publicity machine would have you believe?
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Old 22nd May 2007, 08:49
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Originally Posted by rubik101
So how is it that airlines like Ryanair and easyjet have managed to survive, and record profits, without feeling the need to impose a so called 'fuel surcharge'?
Because they don't need to. Easyjet and Ryanair only sell direct to the customer, who has no way of knowing what the fare was last week, so they simply put the price up without mentioning it. Joe Public just assumes that the really cheap seats have all been sold and he has to pay more. It's still a surcharge, they've just put it into the fare and nobody is any the wiser.
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Old 22nd May 2007, 08:59
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Not really, Carnage Matey, what you're talking about is Revenue Management and all airlines practice that to varying degrees. Anyway, the whole surcharges/ add-ons argument is about to disappear with the DfT ruling that the fare that is seen on the website must include all taxes/charges so there will be no more "stealth" taxes.
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Old 22nd May 2007, 09:44
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JW411...Can I "recommend" the book "Branson" by Tom Bower. Read it and take a balance.....remove the blinkers first and open your mind!! All is not as the Virgin publicity machine would have you believe?
I wouldn't recommend that book to anyone - the author is so disgruntled as to beggar belief, and the book is littered with comments that reinforce that view!

e.g. RB was too busy to give me an interview. Well what a surprise - the man is busy!
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Old 22nd May 2007, 10:34
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Well what a surprise - the man is busy!
Yes, all that time floating around in a balloon really takes it's toll. Mind you balloon and Branson seem like a good match.....
Branson is never to busy for publicity HE thinks is good for him, any negative publicity is swept under the carpet. I think that's one of the points that book tries to make, albeit poorly.
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Old 22nd May 2007, 10:51
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Strepsils, as your name suggests, you sure need them after spouting a fair amount of 'drivel' yourself... Anyway thats another issue.

I dont have a grudge against BA. I just find it totally and utterly incredible that WW can stand up and 'admit' on TV that BA DID do something illegal, that the very strict and comprehensive 'inhouse' procedures WERE NOT followed and that yet more money (which could have been used elsewhere) was being put aside. This being the case, there IS money in the company, despite claims times are hard with yet more excuses we are all expected to beleive.

Add to that the fact he knew nothing about it? No really Strepsils. Get a grip and smell the coffee. WW is the 'all seeing eye', main man, responsible for the TOTAL operation. Nothing is kept from him, and if it is, then why is he 'in charge'?

PS I work for the corporation and have done so for best part of 11 years now. My future and welfare depend on these 'events' going to court, and management ups not once, but regularly in recent years... I think that my 'rationale' might not be as bad as you think

Last edited by tristar500; 22nd May 2007 at 15:11.
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Old 22nd May 2007, 12:37
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Originally Posted by rubik101
said Alice Bows, an aviation researcher at the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research
Well she must be an independent and objective observer
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Old 22nd May 2007, 16:27
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Well, she might be for all I know, WHBM
Do you know any different?
Why don't you write and ask her?


Dr Alice Bows
Email: [email protected]

Phone: +44 (0)161 306 3737


Current position Core Researcher
Role at Tyndall Core researcher working on energy and emissions accounting software (Task 2.2), low carbon international freight transport (Task 2.4) and the construction of demand for aviation (Task 2.7). Participating in the following tasks: 2.2, 2.4, 2.7
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