(Adds background on probe, including others that pled guilty)
WASHINGTON, Sept 27 (Reuters) - Norwegian ocean shipper Hoegh Autoliners has agreed to plead guilty to price-fixing and pay a $21 million fine, the U.S. Justice Department said on Wednesday.
Hoegh, which would be the fifth ocean shipper to plead guilty in the probe, is accused of conspiring to fix prices and rig bids for automobiles and similar cargo, the department said in a statement.
The other four companies which settled with the Justice Department were Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd (K-Line) and Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha of Japan, Norway’s Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics AS, and Chile’s Compania Sud Americana de Vapores S.A.
Four executives have pleaded guilty in connection with the probe and been sentenced to prison. An additional seven who were indicted are fugitives. (Reporting by Diane Bartz; Editing by Richard Chang)