SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A federal judge has found that a Missouri-based trucking company had a pattern of discrimination against its female drivers.

The judge ruled Monday that Springfield-based New Prime Inc. violated federal law by requiring female drivers to be trained only by other female drivers.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued the New Prime over the practice in 2011, alleging the policy limited women's access to jobs or delayed their hiring.

Prime sought to have the case dismissed. It suspended the women-train-women policy in March 2013.

The Kansas City Star reports (http://bit.ly/1uW2W1B ) Prime started the women training policy in 2003 after an earlier EEOC lawsuit focused on sexual harassment of a female driver trainee.

The commission says damages and remedies for the women involved in the case will be determined later.

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Information from: The Kansas City Star, http://www.kcstar.com