Service of Process-Federal Rules of Civil Procedure-Service of Process in Italy on Alien Corporate Defendant Permitted in a Federal Antitrust Action-Hoffman Motors Corp. v. Alfa Romeo S.p.A..
Plaintiff, an American automobile distributor, brought suit in a federal court in the Southern District of New York against Alfa Romeo S.p.A., an Italian corporation, for violation of the Robinson- Patman and Auto Dealers’ Acts. Service of process was made personally on defendant’s general manager in Italy by an Italian attorney appointed for that purpose by the district court, and by registered mail as prescribed by the New York statute for extraterritorial service. Defendant moved to dismiss for lack of personal jurisdiction as to the Robinson-Patman claim on the ground that section 12 of the Clayton Act limits the territorial reach of process under the antitrust laws to the United States. Dismissal was also sought of both the Robinson-Patman and the Auto Dealers’ Act claims on the ground that Rule 4 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure does not authorize service to be made pursuant to state longarm statutes in antitrust cases. Held, motion denied. Service of process in a Robinson-Patman Act claim on a party residing outside the United States is authorized by section 12 of the Clayton Act, and, alternatively, such service is permitted by Rule 4(e) to be made pursuant to a state long-arm statute. Personal. jurisdiction in an Auto Dealers’ Act claim may also be acquired under Rule 4(e) when service is made in the manner prescribed in a state statute.