RPT-UPDATE 1-Ex-Takata executive indicted in U.S. for auto parts price fixing

Thu Jun 5, 2014 4:58pm EDT

(Adds comment from Takata)

WASHINGTON, June 5 (Reuters) - A former executive of Japanese auto parts maker Takata Corp was indicted on Wednesday for conspiring to fix the prices of seat belts sold to car makers.

Takata in October 2013 became one of the 27 companies that have pleaded guilty or agreed to plead guilty after investigations into the fixing of prices of auto parts in the United States.

These investigations involved more than 30 auto parts, including radiators, windshield wipers, air-conditioning systems, power window motors and power steering components. Thirty-five people have been charged in the sprawling scandal.

Gikou Nakajima, a former director of Takata's customer relations division, was indicted in U.S. District Court in Michigan.

He faces charges that he conspired to fix the prices of seat belts sold to Toyota Motor Corp, Honda Motor Company Ltd, Nissan Motor Co Ltd, Mazda Motor Corp and Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd, which makes Subaru vehicles.

"The company regrets the indictment of Mr. Nakajima," said Alby Berman, a Takata spokesman. Berman said that Takata would continue to cooperate with the U.S. Justice Department probe. (Reporting by Diane Bartz; editing by Cynthia Osterman and G Crosse)