Orange County sues Toyota. Can automaker get a fair trial?(Read article summary)
A prosecutor in Orange Country, Calif., filed a law suit against Toyota Friday to force the company to halt sales of "defective" vehicles. Foreign companies have a losing legacy in US courts.
AP Photo/The Journal News, Carucha L. Meuse
Add one more lawsuit to the burgeoning legal woes of Toyota Motors.
Toyota already faces a federal criminal investigation, an inquiry by the Securities and Exchange Commission, and at least 89 class-action suits.
Faced with all that, can the Japanese company get a fair trial in US courts?
History says no. American justice doesn't appear so impartial when dealing with foreign companies.
"A foreign firm ... tends to lose more often in US courts than comparable US firms," says Utpal Bhattacharya, a finance professor at Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind., and coauthor of a 2006 study on the subject.