Berman DeValerio represents a class of diamond resellers, such as diamond jewelry stores, in this case alleging that the De Beers group of companies unlawfully monopolized the worldwide supply of diamonds in a scheme to overcharge resellers and consumers. In May 2008, a federal judge approved the settlement, which included a cash payment to class members of $295 million, an agreement by De Beers to submit to the jurisdiction of the United States court to enforce the terms of the settlement, and a comprehensive injunction limiting De Beers' ability to restrict the worldwide supply of diamonds in the future. This case is significant not only because of the large cash recovery but also because previous efforts to obtain jurisdiction over De Beers in both private and government actions had failed.
On Aug. 27, 2010, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed to hear arguments over whether to uphold the district court's certification of the settlement class. By agreeing to schedule an en banc appeal before the full Court, the Third Circuit vacated a July 13, 2010 ruling by a three-judge panel of the appeals court that, in a 2-to-1 decision, had ordered a remand of the case back to the district court, which may have required substantial adjustments to the original settlement. On February 23, 2011, the Third Circuit, sitting en banc, again heard oral argument from the parties. On December 20, 2011, the en banc Third Circuit handed down its decision affirming the district court in all respects.
The settlement is now final. Checks representing an initial distribution of the settlement funds set aside for resellers were sent to Authorized Reseller Claimants on August 31, 2012. The remaining reseller subclass funds will be distributed approximately 180 days later.