Latest Special issue: Criminal sanctions

Anticompetitive practices

The Australian Federal Court sees Norwegian global shipping company plead guilty to criminal cartel conduct (Wallenius Wilhelmsen) New
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Wallenius Wilhelmsen pleads guilty to criminal cartel conduct* Norwegian-based global shipping company Wallenius Wilhelmsen Ocean AS (WWO) has today entered a guilty plea in the Federal Court to criminal cartel conduct. After an ACCC investigation, on 23 August 2019 the Commonwealth Director (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California sentences former CEO of canned tuna company to prison for price fixing (Christopher Lischewski / Bumble Bee Foods) New
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Former Bumble Bee CEO Sentenced To Prison For Fixing Prices Of Canned Tuna* Christopher Lischewski, former Chief Executive Officer and President of Bumble Bee Foods LLC, was sentenced to serve 40 months in jail and pay a $100,000 criminal fine for his leadership role in a three-year antitrust (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on the criminalisation of cartels and bid-rigging conspiracies
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Sanctions against cartels vary greatly across jurisdictions, from monetary fines against firms and other legal persons, to criminal sanctions (including custodial sentences) against individuals. In the last years, an increased adoption of criminal enforcement regimes has been observed across (...)

The US DoJ files first charges in an ongoing investigation into price-fixing by major broiler chicken producers (Jayson Jeffrey Penn / Mikell Reeve Fries / Scott James Brady / Roger Born Austin)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Senior Executives at Major Chicken Producers Indicted on Antitrust Charges* First Charges Filed in Ongoing Investigation into Fixing Prices of Broiler Chickens A federal grand jury in the U.S. District Court in Denver, Colorado, returned an indictment against four executives for their role in (...)

The US DoJ fines generic pharmaceutical company $24.1million for fixing price of widely used cholesterol medication and files for deferred prosecution agreement (Apotex)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Generic Pharmaceutical Company Admits to Fixing Price of Widely Used Cholesterol Medication* Apotex Corp. Agrees to Pay a $24.1 Million Criminal Penalty Apotex Corp., a generic pharmaceutical company headquartered in Florida, was charged with fixing the price of the generic drug pravastatin, (...)

The US DoJ charges leading cancer treatment center with conspiring to allocate medical and radiation oncology treatments for cancer patients in Southwest Florida and enters a deferred prosecution agreement for the remainder of the cartel investigation (Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Leading Cancer Treatment Center Admits to Antitrust Crime and Agrees to Pay $100 Million Criminal Penalty* Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute LLC (FCS), an oncology group headquartered in Fort Myers, Florida, was charged with conspiring to allocate medical and radiation (...)

The US DoJ announces its intention to continue to hold businesses accountable for per se criminal violations of antitrust laws during the COVID-19 situation Free
Proskauer (Washington)
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Proskauer (London)
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Proskauer (Washington)
As businesses across the globe grapple with the changing realities presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, U.S. and international antitrust enforcers have warned that business should continue to mind the antitrust laws. Global enforcers are also focusing on the role competition laws play as (...)

The US DoJ signals it will step up enforcement in response to COVID-19 and will hold accountable anyone who violates the antitrust laws in connection with the manufacturing, distribution, or sale of public health products Free
Cooley (Washington)
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Cooley (San Francisco)
The DOJ’s Antitrust Division has signaled it will step up enforcement in response to COVID-19. While pandemics and Sherman Act investigations may not seem like the most intuitive pairing, it actually fits a historic pattern in which the DOJ ramps up antitrust enforcement during crises. There are (...)

The US DoJ announces its intention to hold accountable anyone who violates the antitrust laws of the United States in connection with the manufacturing, distribution, or sale of public health products following the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Eversheds Sutherland (New York)
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Eversheds Sutherland (Washington D.C.)
As we all respond to COVID-19 (the coronavirus), we should keep an eye on the responsive measures being taken by the US Department of Justice (DOJ), and consider how those measures might impact companies and individuals globally. The DOJ acts in several roles, including as a part of law (...)

The US DoJ reiterates its focus on prosecuting violations of antitrust laws in areas affected by the COVID-19 outbreak and the criminal prosecution that can be faced Free
McDermott Will & Emery (Chicago)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Chicago)
The potential for government investigation increases during periods of rapid and extreme movement in price. The US Department of Justice (DOJ) recently reiterated its focus on prosecuting violations of antitrust laws, especially in areas affected by the coronavirus outbreak. On March 9, 2020, (...)

The US DoJ charges two executives with conspiracy to rig bids and fix prices in the market for commercial flooring (Robert A. Patrey Jr. / Kenneth R. Smith)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Two Commercial Flooring Executives Plead Guilty to Rigging Bids in Violation of Federal Antitrust Laws* Two commercial flooring executives, Robert A. Patrey Jr. and Kenneth R. Smith, pleaded guilty for their role in an antitrust conspiracy to rig bids and fix prices for commercial flooring (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia secures conviction against the extradited foreign executive for conspiring to rig bids and allocate the market for instrument panel clusters to automobile producers (Eun Soo Kim)
Morgan Lewis (Silicon Valley)
Korean national Eun Soo Kim, a former key accounts manager for an automotive parts company, pled guilty on March 3 in the US District Court for the Northern District of Georgia to conspiring to rig bids and allocate market for instrument panel clusters to automobile producers. Kim admitted to (...)

The US DoJ charges extradited former automotive parts executive with for his role in an international market allocation and bid-rigging conspiracy involving the sale of instrument panel clusters to several automobile producers (Eun Soo Kim / Continental Automotive Korea)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Extradited Former Automotive Parts Executive Pleads Guilty to Antitrust Charge* Fugitive for Nearly Five Years, Extradited to the United States and Pleads Guilty to Antitrust Conspiracy Eun Soo Kim, a former key accounts manager for Continental Automotive Korea Ltd. and a Korean national, was (...)

The US DoJ reaches deferred prosecution agreement with pharma company fined a record criminal penalty for a domestic antitrust case (Sandoz)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Major Generic Pharmaceutical Company Admits to Antitrust Crimes: Sandoz Inc. Agrees to Pay a $195 Million Criminal Penalty, the Largest for a Domestic Antitrust Case* Sandoz Inc., a generic pharmaceutical company headquartered in New Jersey, was charged for conspiring to allocate customers, (...)

The US DoJ confirms it has opened multiple new criminal investigations with its Procurement Collusion Strike Force
Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
A senior official at the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) recently confirmed that the Antitrust Division has opened multiple grand jury investigations in connection with the Procurement Collusion Strike Force (“Strike Force”) formed in November of last year. Speaking at a conference on February (...)

The US DoJ indicts a third individual for bid-rigging in online auctions for surplus government equipment (GSA Auctions / Alan Gaines)
Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
On February 5, 2020, the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced the indictment of a Missouri man – the third individual to be charged – for participation in a conspiracy to rig bids submitted to the General Services Administration (“GSA”) at online auctions for (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority presents criminal complaint against individuals who could have colluded in the sale of goods and services in the health sector
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
For the second time, COFECE presents criminal complaint against individuals that could have colluded in the sale of goods and services in the health sector* Mexico City, October 23, 2019.‐ Yesterday, the Federal Economic Competition Commission’s (COFECE or Commission) Investigative Authority (...)

The Australian Director of Public Prosecutions brings criminal charges against a former general manager for obstructing an Australian Competition Authority’s cartel investigation (BlueScope)
Bird & Bird (Sydney)
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Bird & Bird (Sydney)
In our August update , we discussed the proceedings that had been commenced by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) in the Federal Court of Australia against BlueScope Steel Limited (BlueScope) and its former General Manager of Sales and Marketing, Mr Jason Ellis, for (...)

The Australian Competition Authority starts proceedings in the Federal Court against a steel manufacturer and a general manager for alleged cartel conduct (BlueScope)
Bird & Bird (Sydney)
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Bird & Bird (Sydney)
In August 2019, Australia’s competition regulator, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission ("ACCC") commenced proceedings in the Federal Court of Australia against BlueScope Steel Limited ("BlueScope") and its former General Manager of Sales and Marketing, Mr Jason Ellis, for alleged (...)

The Australian Federal Court imposes a record fine on a shipping company guilty of cartel conduct due to the length, serious nature, and economic importance of the market (Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha)
Herbert Smith Freehills (Melbourne)
Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd (K-Line) has received the largest criminal fine imposed under the Competition and Consumer Act, after pleading guilty to criminal cartel conduct in 2018. Justice Wigney of the Federal Court stated that the penalty “should send a powerful message to multinational (...)

The US DoJ Antitrust Division enters into a rare deferred prosecution agreement, and a first one with a company that is not a bank (Heritage Pharmaceuticals)
Baker Botts (San Francisco)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
The Department of Justice (DOJ) routinely relies on deferred prosecution agreements (DPAs) and non-prosecution agreements (NPAs) to resolve corporate criminal investigations. Since 2004, the DOJ has entered into an average of 33 such agreements per year. These agreements allow companies to (...)

The Estonian Competition Authority opens criminal proceedings to investigate a possible restriction of competition in the agricultural equipment market
Estonian Competition Authority (Tallinn)
Authority conducts criminal proceedings for investigating a possible restriction of competition in companies selling agricultural equipment* In the framework of a criminal case concerning a possible restriction of competition, the Competition Authority carried out searches at the premises of (...)

The Indian High Court in Delhi interprets national Competition Act which criminalises non-compliance with directions or orders (Rajasthan Cylinders)
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
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Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
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Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
In March 2019, the Delhi High Court interpreted Section 42(3) of the Competition Act, which criminalises non-compliance with orders or directions, to cover directions issued by the Director General (DG). [1] The High Court also rejected arguments that to allow criminal proceedings under (...)

The Jerusalem District Court sentences to imprisonment a member of a tree-pruning cartel following a joint investigation of the Competition Authority and the National Fraud Investigations Unit (Zohar Katz)
Israel Antitrust Authority (IAA)
The Jerusalem District Court sentenced a member of the tree-pruning cartel to 11 months’ imprisonment* The Jerusalem District Court (Judge A. Rubin) sentenced today (Wed.) the defendant Zohar Katz to 11 months’ imprisonment, a fine of NIS 100,000 and forfeiture of an additional sum of NIS (...)

The Danish City Court of Hillerød fines two members of the management of a now-dissolved demolition company for bid-rigging
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: Two members of the management in now dissolved demolition company fined DKK 300.000 each in bid rigging case* The City Court of Hillerød has fined two members of the management in a now dissolved demolition company DKK 300.000 each for having participated in cartel agreements in the (...)

The Irish Court of Appeal increases criminal fine imposed on an individual director/manager for bid rigging (Aston Carpets & Flooring)
University Dublin College (UCD)
On June 20th 2018, the Irish Court of Appeal, reviewed the sentences imposed by the Central Criminal Court in 2017 on firstly, a company (Aston) and, secondly, an individual (Mr Smith) who was a director and manager of the company following their criminal convictions for having engaged in (...)

The Irish Court of Appeal increases the fine imposed by the Central Criminal Court in its first bid-rigging criminal cartel case (Aston Carpets & Flooring)
Trinity College Dublin
SENTENCING IN CRIMINAL BIG RIGGING IN IRELAND: THE COMMERCIAL FLOORING CARTEL* I. Introduction 1 On 20 June 2018 the Court of Appeal (the Court) in Ireland’s first bid rigging criminal cartel case increased the fine imposed by the Central Criminal Court (CCC) on Brendan Smith (Smith) from (...)

The Irish Court of Appeal increases the fine imposed by the Irish Competition Authority on a company for bid-rigging (Aston Carpets)
Matheson (Dublin)
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Matheson (Dublin)
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Matheson (Dublin)
Summary In this case update, we discuss a 2019 criminal enforcement case in Ireland brought by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (the “CCPC”) in conjunction with the Director of Public Prosecutions (the “DPP”), in relation to breaches of substantive competition law under the (...)

The Irish Court of Criminal Appeal increases a fine imposed on a former director for bid rigging (Aston Carpets & Flooring)
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
Former director fined €45,000 for bid-rigging tenders* The Court of Criminal Appeal today increased a fine handed down to a former director, Brendan Smith, for engaging in bid-rigging in the procurement of flooring contracts. Mr Smith, who is a former director of Aston Carpets & Flooring, (...)

The US DoJ indicts the CEO of a seafood company on price-fixing charges (Bumble Bee Foods)
Jones Day (San Francisco)
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Jones Day (Los Angeles)
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Jones Day (Washington DC)
The U.S. Department of Justice indicted Bumble Bee Foods CEO Christopher Lischewski on price-fixing charges. Lischewski is the first CEO to be charged for his role in the alleged U.S. conspiracy to fix the price of packaged seafood. The Northern District of California grand jury indictment (...)

The UK Competition Authority disqualifies two company directors for their roles in price-fixing cartel (Abbott / Frost)
Gowling WLG (London)
The UK Competition and Markets Authority (the ’CMA’) has secured the disqualification of two directors following an investigation into a cartel agreement by six estate agencies in the Burnham-on-Sea area to fix the minimum level of commission fees for the provision of traditional residential (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California renders a criminal sentence to a real estate investor for bid-rigging (Michael Marr)
Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
On March 21, 2018, the Chief Judge for the United States District Court for the Northern District of California sentenced Michael Marr to serve 30 months in federal prison and pay $1.4 million for his conviction on bid-rigging in violation of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1. Marr was indicted in (...)

The US District Court for the Southern District of Texas files an information due to conspiracy to fix the prices in the silicone wristbands and lanyards sector (Zaappaaz)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Düsseldorf)
Azim Makanojiya founded Zaappaaz Inc. as a nineteen-year-old university student and quickly turned it into a multi-million dollar business. WHAT HAPPENED: On Tuesday, August 7, online retailer Zaappaaz Inc. and its twenty-nine-year-old president and founder, Azim Makanojiya, agreed to plead (...)

The US DOJ announces that an e-commerce company and its president have agreed to plead guilty to participating in a price-fixing conspiracy (Zaappaaz) Free
Jones Day (San Francisco)
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Jones Day (San Francisco)
Background Texas-based e-commerce company Zaappaaz, Inc.—doing business as WB Promotions, Inc., Wrist-Band.com, and Customlanyard.net—and its president both agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix prices for customized promotional products sold online in the United States, including (...)

The Australian Federal Court issues its first criminal cartel prosecution and fines a global shipping company for fixing freight rates, bid rigging and customer allocation affecting the importation of ten major vehicle brands (Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha)
Ashurst (Sydney)
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Ashurst (Sydney)
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Ashurst (Brisbane)
What you need to know This is the first prosecution under Australia’s criminal cartel provisions since their introduction in 2009. In a landmark decision, the global Japanese shipping company, Nippon Yusen Kabushiki Kaisha (NYK) has been fined A$25 million for its involvement in "deliberate, (...)

The Irish Central Criminal Court fines a company executive for his participation in a cartel and imposes a suspended prison sentence (Aston Carpets)
McCann FitzGerald (Dublin)
Ireland - Hard-core cartel offender gets €7,500 fine and suspended sentence* Following a guilty plea to criminal bid-rigging and obstruction charges, a company director was fined €7,500 by an Irish judge on 31 May and sentenced to three months’ imprisonment (suspended – meaning no jail time). (...)

The US DoJ charges two senior vice presidents company for price fixing of shelf-stable tuna fish (Bumble Bee Foods)
Mc Dermott Will & Emery (Irvine)
Bumble Bee Foods, and two of its senior vice presidents, have recently pled guilty to US Department of Justice (DOJ) charges that they engaged in a conspiracy to fix prices of shelf-stable tuna fish sold in the United States from 2011 to 2013. Bumble Bee agreed to pay a $25 million criminal (...)

The UK Competition Authority obtains a novel "disqualification undertaking" for a managing director of online poster suppliers on the basis that an undertaking agreed not to act as a director of a UK company for 5 years (Mr Aston)
Peters & Peters (London)
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Peters & Peters (London)
An easier route to individual liability for cartel conduct?* On 1 December 2016, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) obtained a novel “disqualification undertaking” from Daniel Aston, the managing director of online poster supplier Trod Limited, whereby Mr Aston agreed not to act as a (...)

The US DoJ and FTC issue guidance signalling that they will bring enforcement actions for wage-fixing and no-poaching agreements under federal antitrust law
Morgan Lewis (Silicon Valley)
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Morgan Lewis (Washington)
The DOJ will now treat wage-fixing and no-poaching agreements criminally. On October 20, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued guidance (the Guidance) signaling that they will bring enforcement actions for wage-fixing and no-poaching agreements under (...)

The Zambian Competition Authority conducts dawn raids as part of an investigation into the alleged fixing of maize and flour prices (Millers Association)
Primerio (Washington)
Zambia: Competition Authority conducts dawn raids in the maize milling industry* ZNBC reported on 30 October 2015 that the Zambian Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) conducted dawn raids on three milling companies, namely National Milling Corporation, Superior Milling (...)

The UK Crown Court sentences an individual who pled guilty to a criminal cartel offence (Peter Nigel Snee)
Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
Director that pleaded guilty to the cartel offence in the galvanised steel water tank cartel has received a six month suspended sentence after his co-accuseds were acquitted. In brief On 14 September 2015, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that an individual had been (...)

The Swaziland Competition Authority imposes administrative fines on parties in the agriculture sector without any specific provisions providing for it (Eagles Nest)
Wallonia-Brussels Trade Commission - AWEX (Johannesburg)
The Swaziland Competition Commission power to impose administrative fines under spotlight* On Tuesday 14 July 2015, the Swaziland Competition Commission (the “SCC”) Board heard the substantive issues related to the anticompetitive behavior of Eagles Nest and Usuthu Poultry Farm (the “Parties”). (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Appeal Court confirms the Russian Competition Authority’s decision against a cartel of suppliers of rehabilitation means for the disabled (April)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Appeal Court confirmed the FAS decision on a cartel of suppliers of rehabilitation means for the disabled* The 9th Arbitration Appeal Court in Moscow dismissed the appeal of “Regional Centre for Rehabilitation Means” Ltd. (“KTsSR” Ltd.), “April” Ltd., “Predgorie Kavkaza” Ltd. on invalidating the FAS (...)

The US Supreme Court declines an appeal for two related antitrust cases involving an international price-fixing cartel (Motorola / AU Optronics)
Womble Bond Dickinson (Washington D.C.)
Motorola and the Extraterritorial Application of US Antitrust Laws to Foreign Component Price Fixing Cartels* Last month the Supreme Court declined to accept an appeal for two related antitrust cases involving an international price-fixing cartel. The cases come from different circuits, one (...)

The US DoJ receives five parent-level guilty pleas for conspiring to manipulate foreign-currency markets from financial institutions (Citicorp / JPMorgan Chase / Barclays / RBS / UBS)
Porter Wright Morris & Arthur (Columbus)
World’s top banks plead guilty to gaming foreign-currency markets* Scandal roiled the banking industry Wednesday as four of the world’s largest banks — Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland — pleaded guilty to federal antitrust violations for conspiring to manipulate (...)

The Russian Competition Authority exposes the novelties concerning criminal liability for cartels
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Novelties in criminal liability for cartels* On 19 May 2015, Deputy Head of the Anti-Cartel Department of the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia), Andrey Filimonov, took part in the Round Table on the “Pressing Issues of Qualifying Economic Crimes and Abuses of Office”. The Round Table (...)

The US DoJ announces first criminal prosecution against a conspiracy specifically targeting e-commerce (Topkins)
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
First E-commerce Price Fixing Prosecution Yields Swift Guilty Plea* In what it is calling the Antitrust Division’s “first criminal prosecution against a conspiracy specifically targeting e-commerce,” the Department of Justice has announced that an individual has agreed to plead guilty to charges (...)

The US DoJ files the first e-commerce case regarding price fixing (Topkins) Free
GeyerGorey (Washington)
Antitrust Division Files First E-Commerce Case* David Topkins, a former executive at the E-Commerce Merchants Trade Association, an e-commerce seller of posters, prints and framed art, has agreed to plead guilty for conspiring to fix the prices of posters sold online. The one-count felony (...)

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice finds nine defendants not guilty on 60 charges of bid-rigging and conspiracy to rig bids (Durward)
Stikeman Elliott (Ottawa)
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Stikeman Elliott (Ottawa)
Canada’s Competition Bureau loses major bid-rigging case: 60 not guilty verdicts* In a further blow to the track record of the Competition Bureau and the Public Prosecution Service of Canada in contested criminal trials, on April 27, 2015, a jury in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice found (...)

The Russian President signs an amendment introducing changes to the Criminal Code on antitrust violations
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
Russia Amends Criminal Code on Antitrust Violations* Russia has amended its criminal code on cartels, signaling a major change in antitrust law enforcement. On March 8, 2015, President Vladimir Putin signed a Federal Law “introducing changes to Article 178 of the Criminal Code of the Russian (...)

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice holds that information received by the Competition Authority at the proffer stage of its immunity and leniency programs is not protected from disclosure to other accused persons by settlement privilege (Nestlé Canada)
TSMC (San Francisco)
Proffers to Competition Bureau must be disclosed to accused, court says* Information received by the Competition Bureau at the proffer stage of its Immunity and Leniency Programs is not protected from disclosure to other accused persons by settlement privilege, the Ontario Superior Court of (...)

The Irish Competition Authority revises its cartel immunity program
European Investment Bank (Luxembourg)
Introduction Given the immense social, economic and personal damage caused by the covering-up of crimes by Irish institutions, there is a remarkable reluctance in Irish society to provide systematic protection to whistle-blowers and persons willing to come forward to ensure offences are (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio approves a plea agreement from a sales manager that conspired to fix prices of automotive hoses (Horie of Toyoda Gosei)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Düsseldorf)
FORMER TOYODA GOSEI EXECUTIVE PLEADS GUILTY TO PRICE-FIXING, BID-RIGGING* On January 6, 2015, Makoto Horie of Toyoda Gosei North America pled guilty to the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) for conspiring to fix the prices of automotive hoses sold to U.S. companies. Mr. Horie was (...)

The Israeli Ministry of Justice publishes a bill regarding an amendment to the Penal Code on the criminal responsibility of corporations
B.Golan Law Firm (Tel Aviv)
Criminal offence for foreign corporations failing to supervise antitrust violations In November 2014, the Israeli Ministry of Justice has published a bill regarding an amendment to the Penal Code (Criminal Responsibility of Corporations), 2014 (" the Bill"). Among others, the Bill updates the (...)

The US DoJ secures a second plea deal with a member of the international shipping cartel for roll-on, roll-off cargo (Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
On September 26, 2014 Japanese transportation company Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. (K-Line) agreed to plead guilty to price fixing, bid rigging and allocating customers for international ocean shipping services for “roll-on, roll-off” cargo. K-Line will be fined $67.7 million. Roll-on, roll-off (...)

The Russian Competition Authority welcomes a construction cartel verdict coming into force (Novgorodavtodor)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
A verdict on a cartel participant came into force* A guilty verdict passed by Novgorod District Court on 14th May 2014 for creating a cartel came into force. A founder and director of “Novomost-53” Ltd., Vyacheslav Somoilov, is found guilty in committing several violations, in particular, under (...)

The US Sentencing Commission looks at changing guidelines in antitrust
Compliance Systems Legal Group
The US Sentencing Commission in a public notice has indicated it may make reform of the guidelines for antitrust crimes a priority this year, 79 Fed. Reg. 31409 (June 2, 2014). I believe the Commission should take action to affirm the importance of antitrust compliance programs as an essential (...)

The Danish Public Prosecutor settles charges of cartel law violations including allocation of costs and bid-rigging in the construction industry (Hansen & Søn)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: ”Construction company pays fine in settlement for bid rigging – first case closed in construction industry cartel”* On 14 July 2014, the company N.H. Hansen & Søn (a Danish construction company) entered into a settlement with the Danish Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic and (...)

The UK Southwark Crown Court allows reporting of the fact that at an earlier hearing the accused pleaded guilty to the charge of criminal cartel offence (Peter Nigel Snee)
University of East Anglia (Norwich)
Article published on Centre for Competition Policy blog. The First Real Test of Sentencing for the UK Cartel Offence* A former managing director charged with the UK’s cartel offence has pleaded guilty to the criminal offence of price fixing. Peter Nigel Snee pleaded guilty to fixing the price (...)

The US District Court for the District of Puerto Rico acquits shipping company’s former vice president of charges of conspiring with rivals to fix the prices (Crowley Liner Services)
Paul Weiss (Washington)
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Paul Weiss (Washington)
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Paul Weiss (Washington)
This article has been nominated for the 2016 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. A federal jury’s recent acquittal of a shipping company executive charged with price fixing highlights the challenges and uncertainties the Antitrust Division of (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority announces criminal charges for involvement in an illegal bid-rigging arrangement relating to the provision of IT services (Library and Archives Canada)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Bid-rigging Cases: Competition Bureau Charges IT Company, 6 Individuals in IT Bid-rigging Case* The Canadian Competition Bureau (Bureau) announced earlier on 2 May 2014 that criminal charges have been laid in a federal government IT contract-related bid-rigging case. According to the Bureau, (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority announces that a corporation and two individuals have pleaded guilty to price-fixing in relation to an ocean freight cartel (ECU Line Canada)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Guilty Pleas in Ocean Freight Price-Fixing Cartel, Bureau Begins Promoting New Compliance Materials Earlier today, the Competition Bureau announced that one company and two individuals have pleaded guilty to price-fixing under the Competition Act in relation to an ocean freight cartel (see: (...)

The US DoJ obtains the extradition of an Italian citizen from Germany to the US on a charge of participation in a price fixing cartel (Marine Hose)
Paul Hastings (Washington)
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Primerio (Washington)
Executives Beware: The Long-Arm of the U.S. Government Strikes Again* The long-arm of the U.S. government and its increasing willingness to pursue foreign nationals for alleged violations of U.S. law was further in evidence last Friday when the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Justice Department (...)

The US DoJ obtains the first extradition of an executive on a charge of cartel participation (Marine Hose)
Jones Day (Los Angeles)
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Jones Day (Washington DC)
U.S. DOJ Obtains First-Ever Extradition on Antitrust Charge* On April 4, 2014, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced its first successful extradition to the United States on an antitrust charge. Romano Pisciotti, an Italian national and a former executive with Parker ITR Srl, was (...)

The US DoJ announces successful litigation of its first extradition for an alleged involvement with the marine hose cartel (Romano Pisciotti)
Reed Smith (Washington)
What Does the First-Ever Extradition on an Antitrust Charge Mean for the Auto Parts Investigation?* On April 4, 2014, the U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust Division announced a milestone victory, having successfully litigated its first extradition for an alleged antitrust violation. Romano (...)

Criminal Sanctions : An overview of EU and national case law
Baker McKenzie (London)
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Baker McKenzie (London)
This article has been nominated for the 2015 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Introduction It is, perhaps, time to take stock of the issue of ’criminal antitrust’ in the EU. In recent years there has been a greater focus on the (...)

The Danish Competition Authority grants its first leniency immunity to undertaking and individual in the cleaning industry for provided information about bid rigging
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: ”Immunity in a cartel case granted for the first time”* An undertaking and a natural person in the cleaning industry has been granted immunity from sanctions in a cartel case for the disclosure of information regarding the cartel. It is the first time that the State Prosecutor for (...)

The US DoJ announces that a former prime contractor manager has been sentenced to serve 14 years in prison in an ongoing bid-rigging, fraud and kickback case (McDonald)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
U.S. DoJ Announces Record 14 Year Prison Sentence in Bid-Rigging Case* In what can only be described as a somewhat sobering announcement, the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) announced earlier today that a former prime contractor manager has been sentenced to serve 14 years in prison in an (...)

The Canadian Superior Court of Justice imposes fines on a multinational corporation for its participation in a bid-rigging conspiracy on the market for motor vehicle components (Panasonic)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Auto Parts Investigation Rolls Along: Former Auto Parts Executive Sentenced to 1 Year in Prison for Deleting E-mails, Panasonic to Pay $4.5 M in Canada* In what can only be called a sobering reminder earlier on 20 February 2014 of the importance of not obstructing an ongoing criminal antitrust (...)

The UK Competition Authority brings criminal charges against ex-manager following an investigation into suspected cartel conduct in respect of the supply of galvanised steel tanks for water storage (Peter Nigel Snee)
University of East Anglia (Norwich)
Can the OFT Succeed in its Latest Attempt at Bringing Criminal Charges Against an Individual for Cartel Conduct?* The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has charged Peter Nigel Snee under section 188 of the Enterprise Act 2002. It is alleged that he ‘dishonestly agreed with others’ to fix prices, (...)

The UK Competition Authority brings criminal charges for involvement in hardcore restrictions on the market for galvanised steel tanks (Peter Nigel Snee)
Hogan Lovells (London)
UK flexes its criminal enforcement muscle* In a move that signals that UK criminal cartel enforcement is set to increase, Peter Nigel Snee appeared on 27 January 2014 at Westminster Magistrates’ Court to face charges under the UK’s criminal cartel offence. Mr Snee has been charged under section (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Court confirms the decision of the Russian Competition Authority sanctioning a cartel on the market of wholesale supplies of table salt (Grocery / TDS / Veles Group / Bryansk Salt / TDS Rostov)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Arbitration Court supported FAS decision about a cartel on the market of wholesale supplies of table salt* Moscow Arbitration Court pronounced legitimacy of the decision of the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia) about a cartel on the market of wholesale supplies of table salt. On 1 (...)

The US DoJ announces that three Northern California real estate investors have agreed to plead guilty for their roles in conspiracies to rig bids (Silva / Bishop / Gee)
Bona Law (San Diego)
Even Individual Real-Estate Investors Can Violate The Antitrust Laws* When you think about a government antitrust investigation, you probably picture monopoly accusations against large companies like Microsoft in the 90’s and early 2000’s or AT&T in the 70’s and 80’s. Or perhaps you imagine a (...)

The Polish Competition Authority strikes down bid-rigging practices in the agricultural sector (APA)
WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Brussels)
In its decision of 31 December 2013 , the Polish competition authority (Urząd Ochrony Konkurencji i Konsumentów, the "UOKiK") reviewed a bid-rigging case involving three farmers who participated in a tender organised by the Agricultural Property Agency ("APA") to sell undeveloped agricultural (...)

The Russian Competition Authority reminds that a bid-rigging can be punished by criminal sanctions (TD DMP / Aquaresource-DV / PRK)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Primorie OFAS Russia: bid-rigging can be punished by criminal sanctions* On 23rd December 2013, the Investigation Department of the Investigation Committee of the Russian Federation in the Primorie region initiated a criminal case upon corpus delicti specified in Part 2 Article 178 of the (...)

The Israeli District Court of the City of Jerusalem convicts for the first time defendants in an antitrust case for attempting to engage in illegal vertical restrictive arrangements and for violating merger conditions (Shufersal)
Eshel, Ashlagi, Rozent (Tel Aviv)
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Eshel, Ashlagi, Rozent (Tel Aviv)
On December 23, 2013, The Israeli District Court of the City of Jerusalem found the company operating the leading nationwide supermarket chain in Israel - Shufersal Ltd. ("Shufersal"), its CEO, Mr. Ephraim (Effie) Rosenhaus ("Rosenhaus") and its Deputy VP Commerce and Marketing, Mr. Eliezer (...)

The US DoJ reaches plea agreement with Japanese auto parts maker for its role in alleged price-fixing and bid-rigging in the automotive parts industry (Takata)
McDermott Will & Emery (New York)
On October 10, 2013, Takata Corp. (Takata), a Japanese auto parts maker, agreed to pay a $71.3 million as part of a plea agreement for its role in an alleged conspiracy to fix prices on seat belts sold to car manufacturers. In addition, Takata agreed that the Chairman-CEO, Shigehisa Takada, (...)

The US DoJ announces agreement to plead guilty in relation to participation in a conspiracy to fix prices of seatbelts installed in cars (Takata)
Bowmans (Cape Town)
“More Auto Parts Cartels Uncovered – Do Sanctions Not Deter Competition Law Contraventions?”* In October last year, Takata Corp. of Japan announced that it would pay US$71.3 million to settle charges of competition law infringements brought by U.S. prosecutors over price-fixing on seat belts sold (...)

The OECD publishes a study showing that retail road fuel market prices can be distorted even in seemingly competitive markets
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Competition & Gas: Canadian Competition Bureau Contribution to OECD Study on Competition & Gas* On my daily media sweep earlier today, this interesting Competition Bureau contribution to an OECD study on competition and gasoline caught my eye (OECD Policy Roundtables – Competition in (...)

The US Senate’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights holds cartel related hearings
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
New Publications: DoJ & FTC Testimony Posted from Antitrust Subcommittee Hearings* The Americans are not ones to pussy foot around when it comes to economic crime. Yesterday, the U.S. Senate’s Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy and Consumer Rights held cartel related hearings (...)

The Australian Federal Court establishes that a defendant has been directly knowingly involved in an anticompetitive arrangement and imposes criminal sanctions (Chaste Corporation)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Peter Foster sentenced for contempt of court* The Federal Court has sentenced Peter Foster to three years imprisonment, with 18 months to be served and 18 months suspended, for contempt of court. Justice Logan also placed conditions on Mr Foster’s involvement in the weight loss, cosmetic or (...)

The US DoJ and FTC head officials discuss antitrust enforcement priorities
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
U.S. Agency Heads Discuss Antitrust Enforcement Priorities* Two of the most significant conferences on the antitrust calendar were held last week. Georgetown Law Center featured its Seventh Annual Global Antitrust Enforcement Symposium on September 25, and Fordham Law School’s 40th annual (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority publishes revised sets of the Frequently Asked Questions related to its Immunity and Leniency Programs
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Competition Bureau Issues New Immunity and Leniency Program FAQs* The Competition Bureau has issued revised Immunity Program FAQs and Leniency Program FAQs (see: Competition Bureau Publishes Revised Immunity and Leniency FAQs). In making the announcement, relating to the first update to its (...)

The US DoJ announces two more indictments in auto parts price-fixing investigation (Fujikura)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
US Department of Justice Announces Two More Indictments in Auto Parts Price-fixing Investigation* On 19 September 2013 the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) announced that two executives of Fujikura Ltd. have been indicted for their roles in the ongoing global auto parts price-fixing (...)

The Danish City Court of Naestved passes sentence upon the owner of a school for fixing prices on driving lessons (Birgits Driving School)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Price fixing between 3 Danish driving schools* On September 11, 2013, the Danish City Court in Næstved passed sentence upon the owner of a driving school for infringing section 6 of the Danish Competition Act by fixing prices on driving lessons in corporation with the owners of two other (...)

The US District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky indicts an executive officer who is accused of agreeing to coordinate bids and fix prices of automotive parts (US / Shingo Okuda, G.S. Electech)
Compliance Systems Legal Group
The Auto Parts Antitrust Case: Is This What Success Looks Like?* Wow, what a success! The Antitrust Division recently announced that its investigations in the auto parts market uncovered “separate conspiracies to fix the prices of more than 30 different products sold to US car manufacturers ….” (...)

The Danish Competition Authority settles with a cartel participant, a major player in the market for white goods (Miele)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Miele A/S, Denmark, pays fine in settlement for resale price maintenance and prevention of parallel imports on white goods* On July 18, 2013, Miele A/S, Denmark, entered into a settlement with the Danish Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime for infringing section 6 of (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes revised guidance on applications for leniency and no-action in cartel cases
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 8 July 2013, the UK’s Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) published its revised guidance on applications for leniency and no-action in cartel cases. The publication follows two earlier consultations on the subject in October 2011 and October 2012 (see VBB on Competition, Volume 2011, No. 10) (...)

The Danish Competition Authority cartel settles with a domestic distributor of leisure weapons (HG Agencies)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Distributor of leisure weapons pays fine in settlement for resale price maintenance* On June 30, 2013, the owner of the company HG Agencies (a Danish distributor of leisure weapons) entered into a settlement with the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority for infringing section 6 of the (...)

The Mexican Congress amends telecom legislation introducing significant changes in competition law
Hogan Lovells BSTL (Mexico City)
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Hogan Lovells BSTL (Mexico City)
A. A brief background of the Constitutional Amendment to the Mexican Competition Regime. On March 11, 2013, the President of Mexico sent to Congress a very aggressive bill proposal to amend, inter alia, Article 28 of the Federal Mexican Constitution. Although it has been publicized as the (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority makes bid rigging a priority in the enforcement of the Competition Act
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
Bid-Rigging in Canada: Recent Developments* The Canadian Competition Act prohibits various types of anti-competitive agreements between competitors. For example, it is a criminal offence for competitors to fix prices, allocate markets, and/or restrict output. Civil proceedings can also be (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority introduces criminal cartel whistleblowing initiative
WeirFoulds (Toronto)
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WeirFoulds (Toronto)
Hiding in Plain Sight: The Competition Bureau’s Criminal Cartel Whistleblowing Initiative* On May 28, 2013, Canada’s Commissioner of Competition, John Pecman, announced the launch of the Competition Bureau’s Criminal Cartel Whistleblowing Initiative (the “Initiative”), aimed at creating awareness (...)

The Danish Competition Authority settles in a case of resale price maintenance in relation to dealers and the prevention of parallel imports (Bosch / Siemens)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
BSH pays fine in settlement for resale price maintenance and prevention of parallel imports on white goods* On April 24, 2013, BSH White Goods entered into a settlement with the Danish Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime for infringing section 6 of the Danish (...)

The Canadian Superior Court of Quebec convicts three individuals for conspiring to fix gas prices in two Quebec cities (R / Gosselin)
Cassels Brock (Toronto)
Gas price fixers convicted after trial* A Quebec Superior Court judge recently convicted three individuals of conspiring to fix gas prices in two Quebec cities, Sherbrooke and Magog. To date 33 individuals and seven companies have been convicted fixing gas prices in Quebec and eastern (...)

The Danish Parliament amends the Competition Act
European Commission (Brussels)
Denmark: Competition Act amended* On 19 December 2012, a revised competition act was adopted. The amendments that come into force on 1 March 2013 are compiled in the Consolidated Act No. 23 of 17 January 2013. The legal framework for sanctioning infringements of the Danish competition act is (...)

The German Constitutional Court confirms that the EU concept of an "economic unit" does not apply under German law but rather the principle of legal personality (Silostellgebühren II)
Noerr (Brussel)
The judgment of 17 December 2012 of the Higher Regional Court Düsseldorf ("Court") deals with the interpretation of Sect. 81(4) Act against Restraints of Competition ("ARC"), which is the statutory basis for the German Federal Cartel Office ("FCO") to issue a fine for antitrust infringements. (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California imposes $500 M fine on a Taiwan-based liquid crystal display producer for price fixing (AU Optronics)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
On September 20, Judge Susan Illston of the Northern District of California handed down sentences to AU Optronics Corporation and two company executives, following their convictions in March for participating in a global price-fixing conspiracy involving LCD screens used in computers and (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California imposes $500 M fine on a Taiwan-based liquid crystal display (LCD) producer for its participation in a five-year conspiracy to fix the prices of thin-film transistor LCD panels (AU Optronics)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Acting Antitrust Chief Attributes Recent Enforcement Successes to Focus on Litigation Skills* On September 20, 2012 the federal district court in San Francisco imposed a record-tying $500 million fine on AU Optronics Corporation (AUO), a Taiwan-based liquid crystal display (LCD) producer, for (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice rules on the restriction of competition through vertical agreements in the context of public bids
Commeo (Frankfurt)
The German Federal Court of Justice (the “Court”) has ruled in its decision of 25 July 2012 that the organiser of a public tender can violate Sec. 298 (1) of the German Criminal Code (Strafgesetzbuch - “StGB”) by organizing together with participating bidders an offer which is based on an unlawful (...)

The US District Court of for the Southern District of Florida allows a plea of "nolo contendere", while retaining full sentencing discretion in imposing any penalty and fining against a price-fixing conspiracy engaged by an air cargo carrier (Florida West International Airways)
King & Wood Mallesons (Sydney)
This article was originally published on In Competition by King & Wood Mallesons (click here). US District Court blows full time on cartel proceedings against Florida West* The District Court has made the rare decision to accept a plea of no contest from airline Florida West, ending the (...)

The Irish Parliament amends the Competition Act strengthening competition law enforcement by providing new and increased sanctions and penalties
Queen’s University Belfast
On 3 July 2012 Ireland’s Competition (Amendment) Act 2012 (“the 2012 Act”) came into force. This Act, as its name indicates, amends the existing Competition Act2002 (“the 2002 Act”) to enhance Ireland’s anti-cartel regime through augmentations to the criminal and private enforcement regimes, and (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority jointly lays 77 charges against 11 individuals and 9 companies in the construction industry in connection with a Quebec bid-rigging case (Carrière Bernier / Cie Wilfrid Allen)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
This article has been nominated for the 2013 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Competition Bureau Jointly Lays 77 Charges Against 11 Individuals and 9 Companies in Quebec Bid-rigging Case – Tough Stance on Criminal Enforcement Continues* On (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California denies motions for acquittal and for a new trial in LCD price-fixing conspiracy case (AU Optronics)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Convictions in LCD Panel Price Fixing Case Stand After Motions for Acquittal, New Trial Rejected* The government’s successful prosecution of AU Optronics Corporation, its wholly-owned U.S. subsidiary, and two former company executives serves as a cautionary tale. The case marks the first time a (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California jury finds two out of five defendants, all from Taiwan, guilty of conspiring to fix prices of thin-film transistor liquid crystal displays (AU Optronics)
White & Case (Washington)
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White & Case (Washington)
This article has been nominated for the 2013 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Are Antitrust Violations Crimes Involving Moral Turpitude?* On March 13, 2012, the United States obtained its first trial convictions ever against foreign (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California returns verdicts in the rare price-fixing trial of global liquid-crystal displays conspiracy (AU Optronics)
Jones Day (Brussels)
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Jones Day (Beijing)
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Jones Day (Tokyo)
Companies and individuals that are accused of price-fixing rarely go to trial. Indeed, in the last 10 years, no corporate defendant (and only a handful of individuals) has elected to litigate an international criminal cartel case in a U.S. court. The vast majority of cases are resolved through (...)

The US DoJ obtains guilty plea by two Japanese suppliers of automotive electrical components imposing a $548 M fine for their involvement in price fixing and bid rigging conspiracies in the auto parts sales (Automotive component suppliers’ cartel)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Fines Mounting in Department of Justice Auto Parts Cartel Investigation* The Department of Justice today announced a total of $548 million in fines resulting from a second round of charges in the government’s ongoing investigation into collusive activity in the auto parts industry. Two more (...)

Criminal sanctions: An overview of EU and national case law
University of Leeds
It is often claimed that in recent years there has been a "worldwide trend" concerning the criminalisation of anticompetitive behaviour. Having recently reread all of the (one hundred or so) articles and case notes published by e-Competitions which are relevant to the subject of criminal (...)

The UK Competition Authority closes criminal investigation in the automotive sector
DLA Piper (London)
On 4 October 2011, the OFT announced that it had closed its criminal investigation into alleged criminal conduct under the Enterprise Act 2002 cartel offence, involving suppliers to the automotive sector. Under the Enterprise Act 2002, the OFT has the ability to investigate suspected criminal (...)

The US Supreme Court denies petition to review conviction for conspiring to obstruct justice in a price-fixing investigation in carbon products industry (Norris)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Antitrust Decision from Supreme Court Unlikely During Current Term* It is beginning to look like the U.S. Supreme Court will not be taking up any antitrust cases in the current term. Last week, the Court denied six petitions for review in antitrust-related matters. Just yesterday, the Court (...)

The Czech Competition Authority hands out penalties to five participants in a bid rigging cartel in the construction industry (Inzet)
Braun Partners (Prague)
Penalty for first Czech Bid Rigging Case Confirmed by Court* Bid rigging has for a long time been a merely theoretical example of criminal liability in Czech Antitrust law without any actual cases decided. Until 2010 with the introduction of criminal liability for hard-core horizontal cartels, (...)

The German Competition Authority imposes a fine of €17,5M for a cartel agreement concerning turntable ladders for fire engines (Iveco Magirus / Metz Aerials / Rosenbauer)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: Cartel Agreement concerning Turntable Ladders for Fire Engines fined with € 17 500 000* On 27 July 2011, the Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) has imposed a fine of € 17 500 000 against Iveco Magirus Brandschutztechnik GmbH for its involvement in anti-competitive agreements on the manufacture (...)

The Mexican Congress passes a bill of amendments to the Mexican competition law
Creel García-Cuéllar Aiza y Enríquez SC (Mexico)
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Rico, Robles, Libenson y Bernal (Mexico)
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Rico, Robles, Libenson y Bernal (Mexico)
Between late April 2011 and early May 2011, the Mexican Congress and President Calderón completed the legislative process initiated in April 2010 to pass a bill of amendments to the Mexican Competition Law (the “Reform”). (The Mexican Competition Law was enacted on December 18, 1992 and became (...)

The US DoJ fines undertaking $45 million for price fixing in the water freight services sector (Horizon Lines)
McDermott Will & Emery (New York)
Today the Department of Justice announced that Horizon Lines LLC agreed to plead guilty and pay a $45 million fine for its involvement in price fixing coastal water freight services between the continental U.S. and Puerto Rico. This plea is the result of an ongoing federal antitrust (...)

The German Competition Authority imposes fines against three manufacturers of fire-fighting vehicles and an independent accountant for infringement of German cartel law (Fire-fighting vehicles cartel)
Heinz & Zagrosek (Köln)
FCO fines cartelists and independent accountant – the fire-fighting vehicles decision* The German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) fined three manufacturers of fire-fighting vehicles on February 10, 2011, imposing € 20.5 million in total. The FCO found that the companies had engaged in bid rigging (...)

The Canadian police arrests a man for alleged breach of a consent agreement involving unfair marketing practices (Strategic Ecomm / Matthew Hovila)
Commonwealth Secretariat (London)
I. Introduction The long arm of Canadian competition law caught up with Matthew Hovila on 15 January 2011 when he was arrested for the operation of an alleged online job opportunities scam and breach of a consent agreement filed with the Competition Tribunal (the "Tribunal") pursuant to the (...)

The Belgian Criminal Court in Ghent fines a supermarket chain for misleading advertising due to the absence or limited availability of products subject to special promotion (Lidl)
UGGC Avocats (Brussels)
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Buyle Legal (Brussels)
I. Introduction In a judgment dated 12 January 2011, currently under appeal, the Ghent Criminal Court imposed a € 27,500 fine on the supermarket chain Lidl for advertising on a national scale products at a discounted price that were either not available or available only for a very short time (...)

A French Government working group recommends the abandonment of the "damage to the economy" criterion for the calculation of antitrust sanctions and urges the French Competition Authority to adopt guidelines (Commission Folz-Raysseguier-Schaub)
Fieldfisher (London)
On the 20th September 2010 the Folz-Raysseguier-Schaub working group presented to Ms. Christine Lagarde, Minister of Economy, its report on antitrust penalties. The committee consisted of Mr. Jean-Martin Folz, former president of PSA’s executive board, Mr. Christian Raysseguier, Advocate General (...)

The UK Competition Authority launches criminal investigation in the vehicle manufacturers’ sector, ballyhooing the Enterprise Act
Innovate Finance (London)
I. Legal background The UK criminalized competition law in 2002 by adopting the Enterprise Act, which came into force in June 2003. It set up a whole new framework to prosecute, on a criminal basis, the individuals responsible for the establishment and implementation of (of participating in) a (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority fines five undertakings and five individuals for price fixing in the trucking market (CanaCar)
Jones Day (Mexico)
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Jones Day (Mexico)
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Jones Day (Mexico)
On June 14, 2010, the Mexican Federal Competition Commission (also known as Cofeco or CFC) announced its decision to fine a group of companies and individuals in the trucking industry, whom Cofeco charged with agreeing to impose a standard fuel surcharge, in violation of Mexican antitrust law. (...)

The UK Court of Appeal holds that mutual dishonesty is not required in order to satisfy the dishonesty element of the cartel offence under section 188 Enterprise Act 2002 (British Airways)
Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
On 28 May 2010, the criminal division of the Court of Appeal handed down an important judgment in which it considered the correct ingredients of the dishonesty element of the cartel offence established by section 188 of the Enterprise Act 2002. The ingredients of dishonesty in the context of (...)

The UK Competition Authority concludes the promising criminal case brought against the main national airline’s executives (British Airways)
Innovate Finance (London)
I. Legal background The UK criminalized competition law in 2002 by adopting the Enterprise Act, which came into force in June 2003. It set up a whole new framework to prosecute, on a criminal basis, the individuals responsible for the establishment and implementation of hard-core cartels: the (...)

The UK Competition Authority launches a criminal investigation in the agricultural sector in order to promote the Enterprise Act
Innovate Finance (London)
I. Legal background The UK criminalized competition law in 2002 by adopting the Enterprise Act, which came into force in June 2003. It set up a whole new framework to prosecute, on a criminal basis, the individuals responsible for the establishment and implementation of a hard-core cartel: the (...)

The Chinese Competition Authorities publish first decision against price cartel under new anti-monopoly law (Guangxi Rice Noodle cartel)
Jones Day (Beijing)
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Gibson Dunn (Hong Kong)
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Jones Day (Beijing)
China’s competition law enforcement authorities published their first decision against a price cartel on March 30, 2010, more than one and a half years after the Anti-Monopoly Law (AML) came into effect. This action against domestic rice noodle producers was reported by the National Development (...)

The UK Supreme Court rules for the extradition of former CEO to the United States on antitrust charges of obstruction and anticompetitive practices (Ian Norris)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 24 February 2010, Ian Norris, the former CEO of Morgan Crucible plc, was extradited to the United States by British authorities to stand trial on charges of obstructing the course of justice in connection with an antitrust investigation conducted by the US Department of Justice (“DOJ”). The (...)

The UK Competition Authority launches criminal investigation in the automotive sector, promoting the Enterprise Act
Innovate Finance (London)
I. Legal background The UK criminalized competition law in 2002 by adopting the Enterprise Act, which came into force in June 2003. It set up a whole new framework to prosecute, on a criminal basis, the individuals responsible for the establishment and implementation of (of participating in) a (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority releases the final version of its Competitor Collaboration Guidelines instituting a new dual-track approach for conspiracy and agreement between competitors
Université de Laval
On December 23, 2009 the Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”) released the final version of its Competitor Collaboration Guidelines (“Guidelines”) that outlines the Bureau’s approach to enforce the new agreement provisions resulting from the fundamental changes induced by Bill C-10. Bill C-10 overhauls (...)

The Italian Revenue Police raids pasta makers during an investigation into a suspected price-fixing cartel (Barilla / De Cecco / Garofalo / Amato / Di Vella)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 15 December 2009, a number of Italy’s largest pasta makers were raided by the Italian Revenue Police as part of a criminal investigation into a suspected price-fixing cartel, which is alleged to have caused an increase in the retail price of pasta by 50% in the last two years. The (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority imposes an 8% fine on an association of undertakings for price fixing and refers them for the first time to criminal investigation bodies (Association of the Depositories of Cereals)
Nestor Nestor Diculescu Kingston Petersen (Bucharest)
Price fixing by associations of undertakings is no novelty in the competition world. Neither are heavy fines, although it is not often that a competition authority reaches an 8% fine for a short term infringement (be it price fixing), and without application of any aggravating circumstances. (...)

The High Court of Eastern Denmark doubles fine imposed by the District Court on a professional association for recommending retail prices (Christmas Tree Growers Association)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 24 September 2009 the High Court of Eastern Denmark increased the fine imposed by a District Court on the Danish Christmas Tree Growers Association for having infringed section 6 of the Danish Competition Act (national provision similar to Article 101 of the TFEU) by having issued price (...)

The Tokyo District Court fines three galvanized steel sheet companies and six former sales executives guilty of violating Japan’s Antimonopoly Act for participating in a price-fixing cartel (Nisshin / NSS / JFE)
O’Melveny & Myers (Tokyo)
On September 15, 2009, the Tokyo District Court found three galvanized steel sheet companies and six former sales executives guilty of violating Japan’s Antimonopoly Act (“AMA”) for participating in a price-fixing cartel. According to publicly available sources, including prosecution materials (...)

The Greek Parliament criminalizes horizontal competition law infringements
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 7 September 2009, a revised Greek competition law regime came into effect, implementing important changes to the competition rules. Under the new regime, individuals who have concluded agreements or have been involved in decisions or concerted practices that: (i) are prohibited by Article 81 (...)

The South African Parliament amends the Competition Act to introduce criminal sanctions against cartel offenses
Jones Day (Sydney)
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Jones Day (Sydney)
Two more jurisdictions, Australia and South Africa, may now join the growing number of countries that impose criminal penalties for antitrust violations. The legislatures in both countries recently introduced legislation that amends their competition law statutes to criminalize cartel offenses. (...)

The US DoJ publishes the indictment filed by a grand jury in the US District Court for the District of New Jersey against a former Scandinavian Airlines sales director (Jan Lillieborg)
Simmons & Simmons (London)
On 08 August 2009, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) published the indictment filed by a grand jury in the New Jersey District Court against a former Scandinavian Airlines sales director. Jan Lillieborg faces three counts - of conspiracy to restrain trade, conspiracy to obstruct justice, and (...)

The Irish Central Criminal Court acquits the directors of three waste disposal companies accused of breaching competition law by jointly tendering for the provision of local waste disposal services (DPP / Hughes / Bourke / McGrath & Gleeson)
London School of Economics
The charges On 3 July 2009 the directors of three waste disposal companies and a former local government official, who were appearing before the Central Criminal Court sitting in Galway, were acquitted by a jury of charges of breach of competition law. The four directors concerned were charged (...)

The Australian Senate passes a bill that introduces new criminal and civil offenses on cartel conduct
Winston & Strawn (New York)
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Jones Day (Sydney)
Following the international trend towards criminalizing cartel offenses, the Australian Senate passed a bill on June 16 that amends the key antitrust law in Australia, the Trade Practices Act 1974, by introducing parallel civil and criminal sanctions on cartel conduct. The Trade Practices (...)

The Japanese Parliament passes amendments to the Anti-Monopoly Act to strengthen cartel enforcement and expand the scope of single-firm conduct subject to fines
Winston & Strawn (New York)
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Jones Day (Tokyo)
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Jones Day (Tokyo)
On June 3, 2009, the Japanese Diet passed a bill that will amend the Japanese Anti-Monopoly Act (“Amendments”) to impose larger surcharges (administrative fines) on companies engaged in cartels and certain types of unilateral conduct and increased prison sentences for individuals participating in (...)

The US District Court for the Middle District of Florida imposes a record jail sentence for antitrust conspiracy (Baci)
Jones Day (Washington DC)
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Jones Day (Washington DC)
Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Justice obtained the longest term ever imposed for a single antitrust violation. It wanted more. Peter Baci, former executive of a U.S. shipping company, was sentenced by a Florida federal district court to serve four years in jail and pay a $ 20,000 (...)

The Australian Parliament amends its antitrust legislation to introduce criminal sanctions against cartel offenses
Jones Day (Sydney)
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Jones Day (Sydney)
Two more jurisdictions, Australia and South Africa, may now join the growing number of countries that impose criminal penalties for antitrust violations. The legislatures in both countries recently introduced legislation that amends their competition law statutes to criminalize cartel offenses. (...)

The Danish Court in Frederiksberg imposes fines on a professional association and the highest fine ever to a person for recommending retail prices (Christmas Tree Growers Association)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 17 February 2009, a Danish Court found that the Danish Christmas Tree Growers Association and its director had infringed Article 6 of the Danish Competition Act (national provision similar to Article 81 of the EC Treaty) by having issued price recommendations to its members. The Court (...)

The President of the Czech Republic signs the new Criminal Code which introduces criminal sanctions for horizontal agreements
Havel, Holasek (Prague)
Introduction On 27 January 2009, the President of the Czech Republic signed the new Criminal Code adopted by the Chamber of Deputies and approved by the Senate. The codex will enter into force on 1 January 2010 whereby it will replace the current Criminal Code, dating back to 1961. In short, (...)

The Danish Competition Authority imposes the highest personal fine ever on flour producer and its director for resale price maintenance contrary to the Competition Act (Valsemølle)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 27 November 2008, the Danish flour producer Valsemølle A/S and its director accepted fines of DKK 1 million (EUR 134,000) and DKK 100,000 (EUR 13,000) respectively for having infringed Article 6 of the Danish Competition Act (national provision similar to Article 81 of the EC Treaty) by (...)

The US DoJ issues new guidance on its antitrust criminal leniency program
Jones Day (Washington DC)
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Jones Day (Washington DC)
On November 19, the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (« DOJ ») issued new guidance on its leniency program, under which cartel participants that cooperate with the government may avoid prosecution. This detailed guidance, « Frequently Asked Questions Regarding the Antitrust (...)

The Czech Chamber of Deputies adopts a new Code criminalising horizontal agreements
Czech Ministry of Justice (Prague)
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Czech Ministry of Justice (Prague)
After 11 November 2008, it appears that the managers of cartel members will have to add Prague to the growing list of “Airports to Avoid”. In fact, on that day, the Czech Chamber of Deputies adopted a new Criminal Code which, among other things, introduces the criminal offence of “breach of (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority confirms lack of anticompetitive conduct in the bio-tech pharmaceuticals market despite evidence of bid rigging brought by criminal proceedings (Roche)
University of Leeds
The Turkish Competition Board (TCB) confirmed its previous finding of lack of anticompetitive conduct by Roche in the bio-tech pharmaceuticals market in Turkey. The decision of the TCB comes after its original decision being annulled by the Council of State for not having taken into (...)

The UK Competition Authority announces criminal charges in the airline fuel surcharges cartel case (British Airways)
Innovate Finance (London)
On 7 August 2008, four men have been charged with cartel offences under the Enterprise Act in connection with the OFT’s criminal investigation into price-fixing of fuel surcharges for long haul passenger flights. They face up to five years in jail, paving the way for the UK’s most high-profile (...)

The UK Competition Authority secures the first ever criminal convictions against individuals for cartel offences - a milestone in antitrust enforcement (Marine Hoses Cartel)
Womble Bond Dickinson (Washington)
Introduction On 11 June 2008, at Southwark Crown Court, His Honour Judge Geoffrey Rivlin QC marked the beginning of a new era in antitrust enforcement in the UK when he entered the first ever criminal convictions against individuals for a cartel offence under section 188 of the Enterprise Act (...)

The UK Competition Authority issues the first imprisonment and director’s disqualification orders against individuals prosecuted for criminal cartel (Marine Hoses Cartel)
Innovate Finance (London)
On 19 December 2007, the Office of Fair Trading (hereinafter “OFT”) charged three UK businessmen with cartel offence under the Enterprise Act. This was the first time that charges had been brought for cartel offence. The three men were arrested at the airport, where they were, following the (...)

The Danish Competition Authority negotiates a fine with an association of suppliers of nautical equipment, its director and chairman for price agreements and retail price maintenance (Nautisk Udstyr)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On the 20 April 2008, the association Nautisk Udstyr ApS, accepted to pay a fine of DKK 400,000 (EUR 53,000) for infringing the Danish Competition Act. The association’s director and Chairman also each accepted a personal fine of DKK 25,000 (EUR 3,000) for their involvement. The investigation (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules against a claim by Belgian dentists on a prohibition on advertising (Doulamis)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 13 March 2008, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled on a preliminary reference made by the Brussels Court of First Instance by finding that a Belgian law that prohibits dental services providers from advertising does not violate the EC competition rules. The Brussels court made the (...)

The UK House of Lords issues a leading judgment on criminal antitrust proceedings in the "Norris saga" (Norris)
Clayton Utz (Sydney)
Introduction On 12 March 2008, the UK’s House of Lords (“HOL”) allowed an appeal by Ian Norris, former chief executive of Morgan Crucible plc, against an attempt by the US’s Department of Justice (“DOJ”) to extradite him for (1) price fixing offences having effects in the US and (2) obstruction of (...)

The UK House of Lords establishes that the conspiracy to defraud offence may not replace the cartel offence, for facts before 2003, where no deceit, misrepresentation nor lies are involved (Norris)
Innovate Finance (London)
I - The NHS case On 28 March 2007, Ajit P. and Kirta P., CEO and COO respectively of Goldshield Group, the drug supplier, were arrested in London on suspicion of price-fixing, from 1996 to 2000, concerning generic drugs at the detriment of the UK’s National Health Service (hereinafter “NHS”). (...)

The Estonian Circuit Court in Tallinn rules in a criminal case concerning an attempt to fix prices, share markets and engage in a collective boycott based on national provisions similar to Article 101 TFEU (Oleg Ossinovski / AS Spacecom)
Cobalt Legal (Tallinn)
On 11 March 2008, the Tallinn County Court (a court of appeal) upheld an earlier ruling of Harju County Court, which had convicted a railway freight services provider, AS Spacecom («Spacecom»), and its management board member Oleg Ossinovski of an attempt to agree on restrictions of competition (...)

The Estonian County Court in Harju rules in a criminal case concerning an attempt to fix prices, share markets and engage in the collective boycott in the freight services market (Oleg Ossinovski / Spacecom)
Cobalt Legal (Tallinn)
On 21 December 2007, the Harju County Court (a court of first instance) convicted a railway freight services provider, AS Spacecom (“Spacecom”), and its management board member Oleg Ossinovski of an attempt to agree on restrictions of competition with its main competitor Eesti Raudtee (Estonian (...)

The UK Competition Authority initiates criminal proceedings against cartel members for the first time in its history following unprecedented levels of co-operation with US authorities (Marine Hoses Cartel)
Womble Bond Dickinson (Washington)
On 19 December 2007, the British Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) announced that an oil industry executive trio was charged with cartel offences under the Enterprise Act 2002 (the“Act”). This is a historic move for the OFT as it uses its powers under the Act for the first time since the Act came (...)

The UK Competition Authority brings for the first time criminal charges based on the Enterprise Act of 2002 for cartel offence (Marine Hoses Cartel)
Innovate Finance (London)
On 19 December 2007, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) charged three UK businessmen with cartel offence under the Enterprise Act. This is the first time that charges have been brought for the cartel offence which came into force in 2003. The three men were arrested at the airport, where they (...)

The Danish District Court of Roskilde imposes a criminal sanction on a company director and fines mobile phone dealers for fixing prices and transport costs following transmission of the case from the Competition Authority (Telemobilia / Aircom Erhverv / Jokerprice)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 27 November 2007 the Danish District Court of Roskilde found that the mobile phone distributor Telemobilia ApS (“Telemobilia”), and its director had fixed prices with two other mobile phone distributors (Aircom Erhverv and Jokerprice). The court imposed a fine of DKK 125,000 (EUR 17,000) on (...)

The Irish Competition Authority settles price-fixing proceedings in the health insurance sector (Irish Medical Organisation - IMO)
London School of Economics
Background The facts of this action have been set out in detail in a previous e-Competitions Bulletin. Therefore, they will only be briefly called in this contribution. The Irish Medical Organisation (‘IMO’) is an association of undertakings that represents some 2,000 General Practitioners in (...)

The French Competition Authority makes use of criminal proceedings to heavily sanction major anticompetitive practices in the course of public tendering (Ile-de-France secondary schools public works)
Innovate Finance (London)
This decision provides useful details on exchange of information between criminal proceedings and competition proceedings. We shall start by recalling the facts. I - Facts: Anticompetitive agreements in the course of public tenders in the buildings and works sector Secondary schools public (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority condemns price fixing and bid rigging for public tenders in the construction sector and for the first time opens criminal proceedings (Bau Art)
CCEE-Lawyers (Budapest)
Background Hétszínvirág Institution for the Education of Handicapped Children (Institution) issued a public tender in 2005 for extension and reconstruction works. As a result of a dispute between the successful bidder and the Institution, a new public tender was published for the same (...)

The Irish Central Criminal Court finds guilty a businessman involved in illegal prices fixing (Manning)
Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
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Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
Under Irish competition law certain offences (in essence infringements analogous to infringements of Articles 81 and 82 EC) attract criminal sanctions. Last February saw the criminal conviction of a businessman involved in the illegal fixing of prices in the motor vehicle sector, the first such (...)

The Irish Criminal Circuit Court in Dublin imposes criminal sanctions on a cartel in the oil market (Dalton / Corrib Oil)
London School of Economics
This case puts an end to procedures initiated at the behest of the Competition Authority by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) between April and June 2004. Having returned 24 defendants for trial on indictment in Galway circuit court at that time the DPP later let it be known that he (...)

The Italian Competition Authority, after investigative coordination with a criminal court, imposes EUR 3.7 million fines to antiseptic and disinfectant product distributors for infringement of Art. 81 EC (Prodotti disinfettanti)
Studio Legale DDPV (Rome)
The Italian Antitrust Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorreza e del Mercato, the “Authority”) has fined producers and distributors of disinfectant and antiseptic products (Astrazeneca S.p.A., Bergamon S.r.l., B. Braun Milano S.p.A., Esoform S.p.A., Farmec S.r.l., Nuova Farmec S.r.l., Germo (...)

The Irish Public Prosecutor brings criminal charges against a businessman alleged to have taken part in a price fixing agreement (IFDA / Ford)
Baker Botts (Brussels)
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Constantine Cannon (Washington)
Facts On 19 April 2006, the Director of Public Prosecutions for Ireland brought criminal charges against a businessman alleged to have aided members of the IFDA (Irish Ford Dealers Association) in fixing the prices of Ford vehicles on the Irish market. Few details have emerged concerning the (...)

The French Competition Authority sanctions 34 building and civil engineering companies for engaging in widespread anti-competitive agreements involving public procurement contracts in the Ile-de-France area (Ile-de-France Public works)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Drapo software case: 34 building and civil engineering companies have been fined a total of 48 million euros by the Conseil de la Concurrence for engaging in widespread anti-competitive agreements involving public procurement contracts in the Ile-de-France (Greater Paris) area.* The (...)

The US Supreme Court blocks foreign plaintiffs from bringing price-fixing cartel claims (Hoffman-LaRoche / Empagran)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
On June 14 2004, in a unanimous judgment, the Supreme Court blocked foreign plaintiffs from bringing an antitrust claim in U.S. courts seeking damages based on higher foreign prices that are allegedly independent of the domestic effects of higher domestic prices. However, the case was remanded (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal overturns criminal sentences on the grounds that the undertakings did not play a decisive role and that the collusion did not produce a significant effect (AP-HP)
Nest Avocats (Paris)
In France, infractions of the rules on public procurement constitute the competition violations most frequently penalised both by the competition authorities and by the criminal judge. In the case examined, the incriminated behaviour was, however, somewhat different to the collusion usually (...)

The French Supreme Court upholds the judgment of the Paris Court of Appeal condemning the manager of a company to a €7,500 fine for having refused to supply a distributor who was reselling its products at prices that were, in its view, too low (Claude Brasero)
UGGC Avocats (Paris)
Description of the impugned case This case involves an indirect RPM system applied in the context of a distribution agreement. The company Rockwood Isolation sent a letter to one of its distributor informing that latter that it was unacceptable that the distributor sold some of the supplier’s (...)

The French Supreme Court upholds the judgment of the Paris Court of Appeal condemning the legal representative of two companies to a € 1,500 fine for having imposed a minimum resale price to their distributors (Nicolas Maincent)
UGGC Avocats (Paris)
Description of the impugned case This case involves an indirect RPM system applied in the context of selective distribution agreements. The companies Estée Lauder and Clinique imposed to their selected distributors, a minimum resale price of the products, through a complex system combining (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal confirms fines for resale price maintenance in the electronic games sector (Virgin Loisirs)
Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
Description of the impugned case Virgin Loisirs imposed minimum resale prices to its wholesalers on its products (electronic games), by circulating recommended prices and applying commercial retaliation measures (interruption of deliveries) if those distributors refused to apply its price (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal confirms fines against the chairman of a company for having imposed a minimum resale price of a product (Herpin)
Verisure Securitas Direct (Paris)
Description of the impugned case Before the criminal court, an action was introduced in order to condemn the resale price maintenance imposed by a supplier to its clients. Indeed, the investigation showed that the supplier indicated in its general commercials conditions a minimum resale price (...)

The French Versailles Court of Appeal confirms fines, independently of anticompetitive practice, against the chairman of a company having imposed a minimum resale price of a product (Hinningen & Ste Fravillex)
Verisure Securitas Direct (Paris)
Description of the impugned case The investigation showed that the supplier imposed to some of its clients a minimum ratio on price and threatened of retaliations measures in a case of non respect of it. Moreover, a strict control was also insured directly by the supplier in order to check the (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules on the first implementations of Art. L. 420-6 C. com. (PFG - Funeral Services of Avignon)
Innovate Finance (London)
Despite the de-penalization of anticompetitive practices, acknowledged by many authors, and implemented by the Order of 1st December 1986, Article L. 420-6 of the French commercial code (the FCC) still states that: « If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the (...)

Dominance

The Cairo Economic Court upholds the recommendation of the Egyptian Competition Authority and fines a TV broadcasting company for abusive bundling of international football events (Nasser Al-Khulaifi / beIN Media)
First Principles Economics (London)
The Cairo Economic Court upholds the recommendation of the Egyptian Competition Agency and fines a TV broadcasting company for abusive bundling of international football events (Nasser Al-Khulaifi / beIN Media) On 29th January 2018 the Cairo Economic Court found that beIN had abused its (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority submits a draft of its upcoming intellectual enforcement property guidelines for public comment
U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (Washington DC)
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George Mason University (Fairfax)
Comments of U.S. Federal Trade Commissionner Joshua D. Wright and Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg on the Canadian Competition Bureau’s draft updated intellectual property enforcement guidelines* This comment is submitted in response to the Canadian Competition Bureau’s (the Bureau’s) draft stage 2 (...)

The EFTA Court sanctions for abuse of dominant position a company active in the market for business-to-consumer parcel services with over-the-counter delivery, thus addressing the issue of judicial review (Posten Norge)
Jones Day (Paris)
A lesson on judicial review from the other European Court in Luxembourg* Legal change sometimes takes unpredictable paths: mid-April, something important happened for European law in Luxembourg, but this did not come from the European Court of Justice (the “ECJ”). Not every reader of this blog (...)

The Polish Competition Authority finds that a foreign broadcasting company has abused its dominant position in the local pay-TV market (Discovery Communication Europe)
French National Research Agency - ANR (Paris)
In 2002 the Cable Television Chamber of Commerce located in Lodz (Poland) filed a complaint with the President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (hereafter: the OCCP President) against the practices of Discovery Communication Europe, a company being registered in Wisconsin (...)

The Lithuanian Constitutional Court rules on the first Art. 82 EC case on alleged excessive fuel prices (Mažeikiu nafta II)
Lithuanian Competition Council (Vilnius)
Just when everybody thought that Mažeikiu nafta II - the first Article 82 EC case in Lithuania - could be put to rest for at least another two years, it was brought back to life as, on 31 January 2007, the Constitutional Court issued a ruling refusing to accept a reference from the Vilnius (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court confirms criminal sanctions against the CEO of a national copyright-management society for excessive fees (X / SACEM)
Innovate Finance (London)
Despite the de-penalization of anticompetitive practices, acknowledged by many authors, and implemented by the Order of 1st December 1986 (the Order), Article L. 420-6 of the French commercial code (the FCC) still states that : “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive (...)

Mergers

The Irish Competition Authority uses criminal sanctions against companies for gun jumping (Armalou / Airfield)
Matheson (Dublin)
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Matheson (Dublin)
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Matheson (Dublin)
Summary In this case update, we discuss a 2019 criminal enforcement case in Ireland brought by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (the “CCPC”) in conjunction with the Director of Public Prosecutions (the “DPP”), in relation to breaches of procedural merger control law under the (...)

The Irish District Court in Dublin imposes a small charitable donation as punishment on a motor company which pled guilty in the country’s first criminal prosecution of gun jumping (Armalou Holdings)
McCann FitzGerald (Brussels)
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McCann FitzGerald (Dublin)
A small charitable donation for gun-jumping* After an 18 month investigation involving officials from both the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (“CCPC”) and Ireland’s Director of Public Prosecution, and a first-ever criminal prosecution, a company that gun-jumped Irish merger (...)

The US DoJ decides to criminally charge a former company vice president and director for concealing and attempting to destroy documents in the context of a joint venture investigation (Coach USA)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
On October 14, 2016, former vice president and director of information technology of Coach USA, Inc. (Coach), Ralph Groen, entered a guilty plea for concealing and attempting to destroy documents and giving false and misleading statements under oath in a deposition during the US Department of (...)

The Danish Competition Authority refers to its first gun-jumping case to the public prosecutor (KPMG / EY)
Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
First Danish gun jumping case referred to the public prosecutor* On 11 June 2015 the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (DCCA) reported Ernst & Young Europe LLP (EY) to the public prosecutor for pre-implementing the merger with the former Danish KPMG member firm (KPMG Denmark). EY (...)

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice clarifies the Canadian Competition Authority disclosure obligations in cartel prosecutions (R / Nestlé Canada)
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
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Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
Canadian Court Clarifies Competition Bureau Disclosure Obligations in Cartel Prosecutions* On February 4, 2015, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice ruled that relevant factual information proffered to the Crown in order to qualify for immunity or leniency under the Competition Bureau’s cartel (...)

The Danish Competition Authority requests criminal indictment for withholding in a merger assessment (Metro Cash & Carry)
Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
METRO Cash & Carry risks fine in Danish merger case* The Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (DCCA) has reported METRO Cash & Carry (METRO) to the State Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime for failing to submit relevant information regarding a notified merger. (...)

The Danish Competition Authority holds that companies have pre-implemented a merger under scrutiny, leading to the first case of gun jumping (KPMG / EY)
Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
First case on gun jumping in Denmark* By terminating the agreement with KPMG International on the day of signing an agreement to join EY, KPMG Denmark pre-implemented the merger between KPMG Denmark and EY that the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (DCCA) ruled in December 2014. It is (...)

The District Court of Jerusalem condemns a former CEO for actual imprisonment time (Mr. Roznhoiz / Mr. Gidor / Supersal)
B.Golan Law Firm (Tel Aviv)
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B.Golan Law Firm (Tel Aviv)
Recently, the District Court of Jerusalem has sentenced the former CEO of the largest supermarket chain in Israel for actual imprisonment time. This verdict is very significant and is most likely to be a mile stone in the evolution of sanctioning for violations of antitrust law. It is (...)

The US DoJ reaffirms the significance of pre-existing documents in HSR merger review (Hyosung)
WilmerHale (Washington)
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WilmerHale (Washington)
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Kirkland & Ellis (Washington)
This article has been nominated for the 2013 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Department of Justice to Merging Parties: Altering 4(c) Documents May Land You in Jail* A senior executive of a Korean manufacturer of Automated Teller Machines (...)

The US DoJ prosecutes obstruction of justice by a South Korean executive in merger investigation (Hyosung)
Jones Day (Washington DC)
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Sheppard Mullin (Washington)
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Jones Day (Washington DC)
A plea agreement entered into last week with the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division (DOJ) provides a sobering reminder of the serious consequence of obstruction of justice, and highlights the fact that such obstruction issues can arise even in connection with seemingly routine merger (...)

The US DoJ announces that an executive of a South Korean company agreed to plead guilty to charges of obstruction of justice and to serve five months in prison for altering documents filed in connection with a proposed merger (Nautilus Hyosung / Triton Systems)
Sheppard Mullin (Washington)
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Sheppard Mullin (Washington)
Tampering With Documents In Connection With Hart-Scott-Rodino Merger Submissions Can Land You In Jail!* One does not usually associate the possibility of criminal penalties with the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act premerger review process. However, on May 3, 2012, the U.S. Department of Justice ("DOJ") (...)

The US DoJ obtains guilty plea for obstruction of justice engaged through false documents submission in connection with a merger investigation in the automated teller machine (ATM) industry (Nautilus Hyosung)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Submission of Altered Documents in Merger Review Leads to Criminal Charges* Automated teller machine maker Nautilus Hyosung Holdings Inc. has been charged with obstruction of justice for submitting false documents to the government in its attempt to obtain U.S.antitrust approval of its (...)

The Bosnian Competition Authority prohibits a merger leading to the strengthening of dominant position on the bakery products market and inflicts financial penalties on the responsible individual for the supply of incorrect and misleading information (Klas / Sprind)
University of Macau - Faculty of Law
The merger notified to the Competition Authority of Bosnia & Herzegovina (Konkurencijsko vijeće BiH) (KV) concerned acquisition by Klas d.d. (Klas) of control over Sprind d.d. (Sprind), both undertakings active on the market for bakery products. At the time of the notification Klas was (...)

The Irish Parliament Committee on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation debates on amendments proposed with a view to adopting the Competition and Consumer Protection Bill 2014
McCann FitzGerald (Dublin)
If it Ain’t Broke, Fix it: Ireland’s Competition Law, Version 2014* It took five years to draft. But now everything’s go!-go!-go! First published late spring 2014, Ireland’s newest competition law reform could be adopted by July. And though planning was long and time for debate is now short, last (...)

Procedures

The US DoJ convicts a foreign executive following extradition proceedings for price fixing (Ullings)
Morgan Lewis (Silicon Valley)
Dutch national Maria Christina “Meta” Ullings was extradited from Italy to the United States on January 10. Ullings previously served as the senior vice president of cargo sales and marketing for Martinair N.V. (Martinair Cargo). On September 21, 2010, Ullings was originally charged in a public, (...)

The US DoJ holds a workshop addressing labour competition issues including "no-poach" agreements between companies
Baker Botts (Houston)
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Baker Botts (Houston)
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Baker Botts (Houston)
A senior Department of Justice (DOJ) official recently remarked that the number of "no-poach" agreements between companies — which can include agreements not to solicit or hire a competitor’s employees — in apparent contradiction of DOJ and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) guidance was "shocking" (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority and the Public Prosecution Service jointly launch revised immunity and leniency programs
Cassels Brock (Toronto)
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Cassels Brock (Toronto)
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Cassels Brock (Toronto)
It used to be the best deal in town: participants in criminal price-fixing conspiracies could approach the Competition Bureau and receive either complete immunity or leniency in exchange for ratting out their co-conspirators. The Bureau and the Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC) still (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on competition and sanctions in antitrust cases
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Competition authorities have imposed substantial fines for competition law violations over the last few decades. Several common steps are observed in setting fines: (i) determination of basic fine; (ii) adjustments (including aggravating and mitigating circumstances); (iii) comparisons to (...)

The US DoJ and the FTC publish competition law compliance guidelines aimed at HR professionals involved in recruitment and remuneration decisions for their firms
Herbert Smith Freehills (London)
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Herbert Smith Freehills (Hong Kong)
In October, the US competition authorities (the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC)) published competition law compliance guidelines aimed at HR professionals involved in recruitment and remuneration decisions for their firms (the US Guidelines). This development (...)

The South African Minister of Economic Development announces the entry into force of new amendments to the Competition Act introducing criminal liability for cartel conduct
Norton Rose Fulbright (Johannesburg)
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Norton Rose Fulbright (Johannesburg)
For the first time in South Africa, directors and managers will face jail time for participation in a cartel. Minister Patel announced yesterday that the amendments to the Competition Act which introduce criminal liability for cartel conduct will come into effect from 1 May 2016. The amendment (...)

The German Regional Court of Berlin refers to questions on extradition discrimination to the EU Court of Justice in the case of the first business executive extradited to the USA on cartel charges (Romano Pisciotti)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
CJEU TO RULE ON EXTRADITION OF EU CITIZENS IN CRIMINAL ANTITRUST PROCEEDINGS The first European citizen to be extradited from Europe to the United States for criminal antitrust conduct recently succeeded in having a Berlin court refer the matter of his extradition to the Court of Justice of (...)

The German Regional Court of Berlin refers the extradition of an Italian citizen from Germany to the United States for cartel charges to the EU Court of Justice to rule on whether Member State extradition can violate the principle of non-discrimination under EU law (Romano Pisciotti)
AkzoNobel (Brussels)
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Hogan Lovells (Munich)
On 18 March 2016, the Regional Court of Berlin (RC Berlin) in Romano Pisciotti v. Federal Republic of Germany referred four questions to the European Court of Justice to seek guidance on whether Mr Pisciotti could argue that he had suffered discrimination and claim compensation from the German (...)

The OECD issues a report recommending several improvements in the framework and procedures for Danish competition cases
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
The OECD recommends improvements in framework and procedures for Danish competition cases* A very thorough examination of Danish competition policy and of the work of the Danish competition authorities has resulted in recognition of the authority and in recommendations concerning the Danish (...)

The Danish Parliament adopts the latest amendments to the Competition Act
Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
Amendments to the Danish Competition Act come into effect* In December 2014 the Danish Parliament passed the latest amendments to the Danish Competition Act. Furthermore, just a few weeks back the Parliament also passed the amendment making merger filing in the Danish telecoms sector more or (...)

The US Senate passes a bill that would protect employees who report suspected criminal antitrust activity to their employer or the federal government from workplace retaliation
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Antitrust Whistleblowers Get Another Shot at Federal Protection from Retaliation by Employers* A bill is advancing through the U.S. Senate that would protect employees who report suspected criminal antitrust activity to their employer or the federal government from workplace retaliation. The (...)

The Romanian Parliament amends the national competition act
European Commission (Brussels)
Romania: Recent Developments in Competition Legal Framework* At the end of July 2014, Romanian Competition Law no. 21/1996 was amended to enhance the decision- making powers of the competition authority. The new provisions concern the quorum requirements and representation of board members (...)

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice holds the presumption that possession of documents, persons, or firms implies knowledge of their contents is unconstitutional in a criminal context (Marina Durward / Devon Group / Spearhead Management / TPG Technology Consulting)
McMillan (Toronto)
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McMillan (Toronto)
Canadian Cartel News – Volume 5 – One Place Where Possession is not Nine Tenths of the Law* Section 69(2) of the Competition Act provides that, by possessing documents, persons and firms are deemed to know their contents and to have done what the documents say was done. Particularly in the era (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority and the Ministry of Employment and the Economy examine a report on the desirability of introducing criminal sanctions for cartel activities
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
Report on the Criminalisation of Cartels was Presented to Stakeholders* Yesterday, the Ministry of Employment and the Economy (MEE) and the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) organised at the House of the Estates an expert seminar presenting the report on extending personal (...)

The Canadian Court of Appeal in Vancouver dismisses an appeal against extradition to the USA for a trial on bid-rigging, fraud, conspiracy and kick-back charges (Bennett)
Cassels Brock (Toronto)
US Obtains First Ever Extradition from Canada on Antitrust Charges* Canadian businessman John Bennett will be extradited to the US face bid-rigging, fraud, conspiracy, and kick-back charges, the BC Court of Appeal held recently. The charges stem from a bid by the company he founded, Bennett (...)

The US DoJ announces a successfully litigated extradition on an antitrust charge against a participant in a conspiracy to suppress and eliminate competition by rigging bids, fixing prices and allocating market shares for sales of marine hose worldwide (Marine Hose)
Primerio (Washington)
From DOJ: First-Ever Pure Antitrust Extradition* In what may well affect African and other international price-fixers going forward, the spectre of U.S. extradition for criminal antitrust charges has been reinforced by the recent successful DOJ extradition request in the “Marine Hose” cartel. (...)

The US DoJ announces first successful extradition based on antitrust charges (Romano Pisciotti)
Dechert (Brussels)
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Paul Weiss (Washington)
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Paul Weiss (Washington)
This article has been nominated for the 2015 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. On Friday, April 4, 2014, the United States Department of Justice Antitrust Division (“DOJ”) announced that, for the first time ever, the DOJ successfully (...)

The EU Commission examines a complaint against Germany on the matter of discriminatory treatment of EU citizens in connection with the extradition of an Italian citizen to the US on an antitrust charge (Romano Pisciotti)
University of New South Wales (Sydney)
Cartel offender takes action against EU* In early April, the US Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division (DoJ) successfully extradited Romano Pisciotti – an Italian national - from Germany on an antitrust charge. It has been revealed this week that Mr Pisciotti has raised a legal challenge (...)

The Canadian Superior Court allows the enforcement of the letters rogatory issued by a US District Court to obtain evidence as regards an allegation of price-fixing of foam (Neuwirth / DeCosta)
Affleck Greene McMurtry (Toronto)
This article has been nominated for the 2015 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Criminal Investigations and Cross Border Litigation Not A Bar to US Depositions* The Superior Court of Ontario recently granted an application for the (...)

The Canadian Supreme Court rules that investigators cannot search personal electronic items without a warrant providing them with an express authorization (Vu)
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
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Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Montréal)
The Supreme Court of Canada: A Computer is Not a Cupboard* When investigating cartel violations in Canada, the Competition Bureau’s tool of choice is the “search and seizure” (the Canadian equivalent of the “dawn raid” in Europe). The Bureau execises its search and seizure powers pursuant to (...)

The UK Court of Appeal requires French defendants to comply with disclosure orders despite the French "blocking statute" (Secretary of State for Health / Servier Laboratories)
White & Case (London)
,
JPTT & Partners (Paris)
,
White & Case (Brussels)
This article has been nominated for the 2014 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. The existence in several countries of “blocking statutes”, which prohibit the provision of economic information to foreign authorities or courts (or require prior (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority seeks input on its new draft inquiries bulletin
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
New Competition Bureau Inquiries Bulletin & New Commissioner Remarks* Earlier today (3 October 2013) the Competition Bureau published for public consultation a new draft Inquiries Bulletin. Canada’s new Commissioner of Competition, John Pecman, also outlined some of the Bureau’s priorities (...)

The Estonian Parliament amends its competition act
European Commission (Brussels)
Estonia: Competition Act amended* On 15 July 2013, amendments to the Competition Act came into force. The main changes concern the administrative procedure. The first set of amendments concern the decisions adopted by the Competition Authority pursuant to Article 5 of Regulation 1/2003. The (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority launches the "Whistleblowing Initiative" in order to encourage the general public and the business community to report suspected violations of the Competition Act
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
New Competition Act Whistleblowers Page* Given the recently increased focus on criminal competition law matters (e.g., cartels) and whistleblowing, the latter in the competition law world and corporate crime area generally, I thought I would launch a new whistleblowing page on the blog. A (...)

The Danish Competition Authority issues new guidelines concerning access to justice in competition law matters
Mircea & Partners (Bucharest)
1. Introduction In March 2013 Danish Competition and Consumer Authority has issued new guidelines concerning access to justice in competition law matters. The formulation is direct and pedagogically constructed. The addressees are advised on how to bring a complaint against an undertaking and (...)

The Danish Parliament adopts a law introducing criminal sanctions with imprisonment for serious cartel infringements
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Introduction of imprisonment in cartel cases in the Danish Competition Act* On 1st March 2013, a new Danish Competition Act (Consolidated Act No. 23 of 17 January 2013) came into force. It amended the legal framework for sanctions as follows: Imprisonment for up to 18 months for (...)

The Danish Parliament adopts amendments to the Danish Competition Act introducing criminal sanctions against cartels
Copenhagen Business School
On 23 December 2012, Denmark adopted amendments to the Danish Competition Act and to the Criminal Code. The main changes were the introduction of the possibility of incarceration in cartel cases as well as increased fines. According to the Competition Act’s section 23, membership of a cartel may (...)

The Polish Competition Authority submits a draft amendment to the Polish Competition Act: revolution or fine-tuning?
Queen’s University Belfast
,
University of Warsaw
In early 2012 the Polish Competition Authority (the President of the Office for Protection of Competition and Consumers, PCA) opened a discussion on the need of an amendment of Polish competition law and later publicly presented its ideas. In mid-2012 the PCA sent a draft proposal to numerous (...)

The Danish Competition Authority proposes the introduction of imprisonment and significantly higher fines for competition law infringements
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 26 October 2012, the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (“DCCA”) put forward a proposal for revising the Danish Competition Act and the Danish Penal Code. The changes are primarily aimed at introducing the possibility of imprisonment for infringements of Article 101 TFEU and the (...)

The US District Court for the Eastern District of New York authorizes disclosure of portions of the grand jury testimony of two witnesses who had testified during the criminal investigation in the consolidated civil antitrust cases challenging alleged collusion in air cargo charges (Air Cargo Shipping Services)
Jones Day (Washington DC)
,
Jones Day (Cleveland)
The U.S. magistrate judge in the consolidated civil antitrust cases challenging alleged collusion in air cargo charges has authorized disclosure of portions of the grand jury testimony of two witnesses who had testified during the criminal investigation conducted earlier by the U.S. Department (...)

The Canadian Federal Court calls for tougher criminal sentences for infringing cartel criminal offences (Maxzone)
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
In October 2012, in a price fixing case that came before Canada’s Federal Court – R v Maxzone- Chief Justice Paul Crampton, when pronouncing judgment, made statements calling for tougher sentences. In Canada, both companies and individuals can be liable for criminal penalties for infringing the (...)

The Irish Parliament adopts a new competition act
European Commission (Brussels)
Ireland: Competition (Amendment) Act 2012 signed into Law* The Competition (Amendment) Act, 2012 which contains a number of provisions aimed at strengthening the enforcement powers of the Competition Authority was signed into law on 20 June 2012. The new Act commenced on 3 July 2012. With (...)

The Greek Competition Authority fines undertakings for obstructing dawn raids (Kaplanidis Mills / Association of Greek Flour Industries)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 14 June 2012, the Hellenic Competition Commission (“HCC”) announced that it has fined Kaplanidis Mills S.A. and the Association of Greek Flour Industries for obstructing on-site inspections carried out on the basis of suspicions of anticompetitive behaviour in the flour and grain sector. (...)

The UK Government announces reform of the competition regime
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Squire Patton Boggs (London)
,
Jones Day (London)
On 15 March 2012, the UK Government announced its plans for reforming the UK competition regime. The Government has stopped short of radically redesigning the competition regime. Although one government body is replacing two, and there are significant changes expected for criminal prosecutions, (...)

The UK Government announces the outcome of its consultation on the future of the competition regime
European Commission (Brussels)
United Kingdom: Competition Regime Reforms announced* On 15 March 2012, the UK Government announced the outcome of its consultation on the future of the competition regime. Following the consultation, the Government is proposing to create a new Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) that (...)

The Irish Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation publishes a new competition bill to strengthen competition law enforcement
University of East Anglia (Norwich)
Article published on Centre for Competition Policy blog. Will IMF Requirement that Ireland Strengthen Competition Law Sanctions Actually Make a Difference?* The Republic of Ireland is facing the most serious economic crisis in its history. In order to deal with its sovereign debt crisis, it (...)

The UK Competition Authority gives guidance for businesses and directors on competition law compliance
Allen & Overy (London)
,
Allen & Overy (London)
This article has been nominated for the 2012 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. The OFT has published a package of materials aimed at helping companies establish a culture of compliance with UK competition law, and considering the specific (...)

The UK Government consults on wide-ranging reforms to the competition regime, including a proposal to merge the Office of Fair Trading and the Competition Commission into a single competition and markets authority
Wiggin (London)
I. Background On 14 October 2010, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (“BIS”) announced the intention to bring together the Competition Commission (“CC”) and the competition functions of the Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) to form a single Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”). BIS (...)

The UK Government consults on plans to merge the Office of Fair Trading and the Competition Commission
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 16 March 2011, the UK Government launched a consultation on options for reforming the UK competition regime and unveiled its plans to create a single Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) by merging the competition functions of the UK’s existing two competition authorities, namely, the (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules that illegally obtained evidence cannot be used before the Competition Authority (Phillips / Sony)
University Aix-Marseille
I. The Issues at Hand In France, the competition authority (Autorité de la concurrence that used to be known as the Conseil de la concurrence) is in charge of ruling cases of anticompetitive practices. Even though it is not technically a court, one can appeal its decisions before the Appeal (...)

The Austrian Supreme Court holds that records from competition proceedings cannot be withheld from the public prosecutor in a following criminal proceeding on the grounds of protecting trade secrets according to the Anti-Cartel Act (Elevator cartel)
Salzburg University
Background: Following on from the elevator cartel case («Aufzugskartell»), in which the involved undertakings were fined 25 million Euros for breaching Art 81 ECT (Art 101 TFEU), the public prosecutor («Staatsanwaltschaft Wien») brought proceedings against a number of involved persons pursuant to (...)

The Greek Government agrees to the Memorandum of Understanding with EU Commission, ECB, and IMF on specific economic and competition policy conditionality for granting financial assistance
Potamitis Vekris (Athens)
,
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
The views expressed here are the authors’ alone. 1. Introduction Faced with the current economic crisis, the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) has a crucial role to play in safeguarding the conditions of effective competition and in fostering a genuine “competition culture” in Greece. Free (...)

The Slovakian Parliament extends the scope of application of the leniency program to criminal proceedings
European Commission (Brussels)
Slovakia: Leniency extended to Criminal Enforcement On 27 April 2010, the National Council of the Slovak Republic (Slovak Parliament) approved an amendment to the Criminal Code of the Slovak Republic, which extends the scope of application of the current leniency programme to criminal (...)

The English High Court rejects an appeal brought by a former CEO against an order to extradite him to the United States (Ian Norris)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 15 May 2009, the English High Court rejected an appeal brought by Ian Norris, the former chief executive of Morgan Crucible plc against an order to extradite him to the United States to face charges of obstructing the course of an antitrust investigation conducted by the US Department of (...)

The Canadian Parliament adopts major amendments to the Competition Act including new hybrid "dual-track" conspiracy provisions and new merger review process
Université de Laval
On March 12, 2009, the Canadian Government passes Bill C-10, an Act to implement certain provisions of the budget tabled in Parliament on January 27, 2009 and related fiscal measures(the Budget Implementation Actor Bill C-10), which contains fiscal and economic measures dealing with the current (...)

The Hungarian Constitutional Court condemns a statute imposing ’occupational ban’ on the executives of cartelist companies
Szeged University
On the 23rd of February 2009, The Hungarian Constitutional Court (hereafter: HCC) has finally spoken about the Amending Law of the Hungarian Competition Act (hereafter: Amendment), considering it partially unconstitutional. The Amendment concerned different issues, among others: damages (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes revised leniency guidance for businesses and individuals that come forward with information about their involvement in a cartel
DG COMP (Brussels)
Introduction In December 2008, the UK Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) published revised guidance (“the Guidance”) for undertakings and individuals that are contemplating applying for leniency in cartel cases , which sets out the OFT’s position on a number of important leniency-related issues. (...)

The UK Court of Appeal’s judgment in the Marine Hoses cartel shows the interplay between UK criminal investigation and US plea agreement (Whittle / Allison & Brammar)
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
The Marine Hoses Cartel has been a test case on several grounds: parallel and coordinated dawn raids by the European Commission, the OFT and the US DoJ; first criminal prosecution to be brought under the new Criminal Cartel Offence in the UK; use of DVD covertly recording of a cartel meeting (...)

The UK Competition Authority issues first criminal conviction under the Enterprise Act 2002 following successful cooperation with the US DoJ (Marine Hoses Cartel)
The Bar of Ireland - The Law Library
1. Summary On 11 June 2008, three UK businessmen were the first to be criminally convicted under the Enterprise Act 2002, since it came into force in 2003. After an eleven month investigation by the Office of Fair Trading (OFT), in cooperation with the US Department of Justice (DOJ), the men (...)

The UK Competition Authority proposes payments to whistle-blowers in leniency proceedings
Kingsley Napley (London)
,
GQ Employment Law (London)
,
Linklaters (London)
The United Kingdom Office of Fair Trading recently announced details of a ‘payment to informants’ scheme aimed at uncovering and taking action against cartel activity. The OFT is one of the first anti-trust regulators to introduce such reward payments. It remains to be seen whether other Member (...)

The French Working Group on the de-penalization of business law in France takes steps towards de-penalization of anticompetitive practices (Coulon Report)
Innovate Finance (London)
On 20 January 2008, the working group on the de-penalization of business law in France, led by Jean-Marie Coulon, First Interimary President of the Paris Appeal Court, issued a report. This group was created on the request of the current French government which wished to re-organize the (...)

The French Supreme Court acknowledges the boundaries of the transmission of information between criminal courts and the national competition authority (Colas Ile-de-France Normandie)
Innovate Finance (London)
I - Background Article L. 463-5 of the Commercial Code creates the possibility for the Competition Council to request documents closely linked to the facts referred to it and belonging to another national authority. The decision under examination is the last in this case and upholds the (...)

The Luxembourg Administrative Tribunal rules on the prohibition of self-incrimination in cartel investigation procedures (Tile products cartel)
Moyse Bleser (Luxembourg)
,
Herbert Smith Freehills (Berlin)
I. Introduction On 15 November 2007, the Luxembourg administrative tribunal (Tribunal administratif) (“Tribunal”) rejected an action for annulment (hereinafter the “Action”) filed against a decision adopted by the Competition Inspectorate (Inspection de la concurrence) (“Inspectorate”), by virtue (...)

Antitrust Law and Criminal Law in Italy
University of Catania
1. The regulatory framework In Italy, besides the EC Treaty dispositions and the regulations enacted by the European Community, the normative tools of protection of competition are mainly provided by law 10 April 1990, n° 287 (hereinafter “Law n° 287/90”), which introduces “rules for the (...)

Irish criminal competition sanctions: An overview
London School of Economics
Background The basic Irish domestic competition law provisions mirror Articles 81 and 82 of the EC treaty. Since the coming into force of Regulation 1/2003, the “modernisation regulation”, Articles 81 and 82 EC, as well as the domestic competition provisions which replicate them, are applied by (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules that company reselling products bought from its own branch can be convicted of below-cost price reselling (Décathlon)
University Aix-Marseille
The law that prohibits below-cost price in France is very plainly stated in the French Commercial Code (Article L.442-2) and defines the act as “reselling ... a product below its effective cost. This rather simple definition leaves a lot of room for the French Supreme Court to define what should (...)

The Federal Cartel Office issues guidelines on the method of setting fines and emphasis the role of criminal and administrative sanctions in German competition law-enforcement
Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen
I. Introduction The following article shall provide an overview over the public sanctioning system in the German Act against Restraints of Competition (hereinafter referred to as ARC) and outline the latest legislative developments. II. The law of criminal sanctions and administrative (...)

The Estonian Government provides an overview of the National Competition Law and relevant institutions
EFTA Surveillance Authority (Brussels)
Introduction The primary rules of Estonian competition law are enacted in the Estonian Competition Act (hereinafter: ECA), in force from October 1, 2001. The current ECA is the third in a row. The very first Competition Act stepped into force on October 10, 1993 and the second on October 1, (...)

The UK High Court allows the US to seek extradition of a suspect on charges of price fixing and obstruction of justice (Ian Norris)
Innovate Finance (London)
,
Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH) (Luxembourg)
1. The facts The US Department of Justice (DOJ) is increasingly willing to pursue criminal price-fixing cartels affecting US markets. The Ian Norris decision is a landmark decision for the reason that it is the first time the US is seeking the extradition of a foreigner for an antitrust crime. (...)

The French Competition Authority implements the leniency procedure for the first time (Door manufacturing sector)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
,
Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
On 11 April 2006, the French Competition Council (“Conseil de la concurrence”) published a decision condemning door manufacturers active in two cartels. In this case, for the first time, the Conseil de la concurrence applied the leniency procedure for cartel whistleblowers. The leniency (...)

The French Competition Authority acknowledges the modalities governing the communication of documents from criminal Courts (Ile-de-France Public works)
Innovate Finance (London)
I - Background Article L. 463-5 of the Commercial Code creates the possibility for the Competition Council to request documents closely linked to the facts referred to it and belonging to another national authority. The decision under examination follows another similar one (French Competition (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal sets the boundaries of the power of the Competition Authority to refer a case to a criminal court (STAL / Ernée Viandes)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to individuals having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “ If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or implementation (...)

The Latvian Senate’s Department of Administrative Cases passes decision addressing "modernisation" of national competition law and procedural issues after coming into effect of EC Reg. n° 1/2003
Tark Grunte Sutkiene (Riga)
What procedural issues have the Latvian courts dealt with after Reg. n° 1/2003 came into force ? The importance of knowing procedural activities It is useful to know the procedural nuances even if the particular procedural activity is performed by a competition institution. Sometimes it is (...)

The French Competition Authority refers to a hard-core cartel to the public prosecutor (Ready-made concrete stairs)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to natural persons having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or (...)

The US Supreme Court holds that the sentencing guidelines may no longer mandate judges to enhance sentences beyond the statutory maximum unless the predicate facts supporting such enhancements are first proved by a jury beyond a reasonable doubt, or admitted by defendant (Booker)
Steptoe & Johnson (Washington)
On January 12, 2005, the US Supreme Court handed down a pair of landmark decisions that could fundamentally shift the balance of power for corporations facing criminal antitrust investigations from the Department of Justice (“DOJ”). In United States v. Booker and United States v. Fanfan, the (...)

The French Competition Authority refers to a hard-core cartel case to the public prosecutor (Bakery sector in the Marne department)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to natural persons having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or (...)

An overview of Swedish competition law and upcoming reforms
General Court of the European Union (Luxembourg)
The Swedish Competition Act (hereinafter the “Competition Act”) entered into force in connection with Sweden’s accession to the EEA in 1994. It contains provisions that are similar to those laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty Establishing the European Community (hereinafter “EC”). In (...)

Regulations

The US DoJ announces new policy to consider the existence of effective antitrust compliance programs at the charging stage of criminal antitrust investigations
Shearman & Sterling (New York)
,
Shearman & Sterling (New York)
,
Shearman & Sterling (Washington)
The Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (Division) finally will consider the existence of effective antitrust compliance programs at the charging stage of criminal antitrust investigations, opening up the possibility that cartel participants could avoid prosecution even if they (...)

The US DoJ announces criminal enforcement policy that boosts the value of antitrust compliance programs
Jones Day (San Francisco)
,
Jones Day (San Francisco)
The U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division ("DOJ") recently announced significant revisions to its criminal enforcement policies regarding the value it places on a company’s pre-existing antitrust compliance program. Longstanding DOJ policy denied credit to companies at the charging stage (...)

The French Parquet National Financier and the Anti-Corruption Agency publish procedural guidelines on the steps that need to be taken by companies that wish to enter into deferred prosecution agreements
Dechert (London)
,
Dechert (London)
,
Dechert (London)
Navigating French Internal Investigations and Self-Reporting - French Authorities Issue New Guidance* France is off to a strong start enforcing Sapin II, its December 2016 anti-corruption legislation. Since the enactment of the statute, the lead French investigating and prosecuting agencies, (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority and the Public prosecution service revise immunity and leniency programs
Norton Rose Fulbright (Toronto)
Competition Bureau’s new “disclosure first” immunity and leniency programs take effect* Antitrust and competition On September 27 the Competition Bureau (the Bureau) and the Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC) launchedrevised immunity and leniency programs in relation to investigating (...)

The US FTC and DoJ publish antitrust guidance to human resource professionals about how antitrust laws apply in the employment context
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
,
McDermott Will & Emery (Chicago)
On October 20, 2016, the United States Department of Justice Antitrust Division (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued joint Antitrust Guidance to Human Resource (HR) Professionals (the Guidance) involved in hiring and compensation decisions. The agencies issued the guidance to educate (...)

The US DoJ and FTC publish their antitrust guidance in order to alert HR professionals that agreements among competing employers to limit or fix the terms may violate antitrust laws
Baker Botts (Washington)
After years of filing civil enforcement actions against companies, hospitals, and various employer groups for entering into a variety of schemes to suppress employee wages, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission have made it clear that naked (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules that State authorized monopoly on horse betting is not an illegal anticompetitive practice (Gambling monopoly)
University Aix-Marseille
Crime, State and free competition One may argue that most illegal activities conducted by criminal organization are mainly infringements over the monopoly of the State. Private Justice, illegal gambling, racketeering and drug-trafficking are behaviors that more or less mimic states practices (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules that State authorized monopoly on horse betting is not an illegal anticompetitive practice (Gambling monopoly)
University Aix-Marseille
Crime, State and free competition One may argue that most illegal activities conducted by criminal organization are mainly infringements over the monopoly of the State. Private Justice, illegal gambling, racketeering and drug-trafficking are behaviors that more or less mimic states practices (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules that State authorized monopoly on horse betting is not an illegal anticompetitive practice (Gambling monopoly)
University Aix-Marseille
Crime, State and free competition One may argue that most illegal activities conducted by criminal organization are mainly infringements over the monopoly of the State. Private Justice, illegal gambling, racketeering and drug-trafficking are behaviors that more or less mimic states practices (...)

The Estonian Supreme Court upholds the judgment of county court terminating the proceedings against State postal monopoly on misdemeanour charges on the grounds of an abuse of dominant position (Eesti Post)
Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer (Brussels)
The Estonian Competition Authority fined AS Eesti Postin expedite proceedings for an abuse of dominant position (unequal treatment, fidelity rebates). Eesti Post appealed the decision. On October 3, 2007, the Supreme Court decided to partially satisfy the cassation and declared the decision of (...)

Public sector

The UK Competition Authority publishes guidance with practical advice for project directors and managers on how to avoid bid rigging and cartel activity in the construction market
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
,
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
The recently published Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) guidance provides practical advice on how to avoid bid rigging and cartel activity. The guidance warns that construction directors, managers and suppliers should be aware that bid rigging can take many forms, for example: bid (...)

The US DoJ launches a "Strike Force" to combat anticompetitive crimes in government procurement
Jones Day (Washington DC)
,
Jones Day (Washington DC)
,
Jones Day (Washington DC)
Last week, the U.S. Department of Justice ("DOJ") launched the Procurement Collusion Strike Force ("PCSF") to detect, investigate, and prosecute antitrust crimes in government procurement, grant, and program funding, at all levels of government. This interagency partnership includes prosecutors (...)

The US DoJ forms new criminal antitrust “strike force” focused on investigating price fixing and bid rigging for government contracts
Baker Botts (Washington)
,
Baker Botts (Washington)
,
Baker Botts (Washington)
On November 5, 2019, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced the creation of a new “strike force” designed to combat criminal antitrust violations in the government procurement process. The newly-formed Procurement Collusion Strike Force (“PCSF”) will include prosecutors from DOJ’s (...)

The US DoJ announces the formation of a «Procurement Collusion Strike Force»
Morgan Lewis (Philadelphia)
,
Morgan Lewis (Washington)
,
Morgan Lewis (Silicon Valley)
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) on November 5 announced the formation of the Procurement Collusion Strike Force (PCSF). This interagency initiative will “lead a coordinated national response to combat antitrust crimes and related schemes in government procurement, grant, and program funding (...)

The EU Court of Justice confirms that the absence of self-certification is a discretionary exclusion ground in a public procurement sector (Impresa di Costruzioni Ing. E. Mantovani / RTI Mantovani e Guerrato)
University of Bristol - Law School
ECJ confirms discretion to exclude tenderers for not updating self-certifications and points towards potential general obligation of sincere cooperation (C-178/16)* In its Judgment of 20 December 2017 in Impresa di Costruzioni Ing. E. Mantovani and RTI Mantovani e Guerrato, C-178/16, (...)

The US FTC and DoJ jointly issue antitrust guidance for human resource professionals
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
On October 20, 2016, the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) jointly issued new guidance designed to help human resources professionals and their companies understand the potential antitrust implications of their work. The guidance (...)

The Danish District Court of Glostrup imposes fines on two environmental laboratories and their directors for bid rigging (Environmental Laboratory / Milana)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 25 March 2011, a Danish District Court convicted two environmental laboratories for bid rigging and imposed fines of DKK 500,000 (approx. EUR 67,000) on each of the two companies and fines of DKK 25,000 (approx. EUR 3,400) on each of the two directors. I. Background Miljølaboratoriet I/S (...)

The French Competition Authority refers to a bid-rigging case "likely to be qualified as criminal" to the public prosecutor (Furiani stadium)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to natural persons having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court upholds sentences inflicting prison, fines and damages for bid-rigging (Le Havre lighting)
Nest Avocats (Paris)
In France, criminal prosecutions against the authors of anti-competitive practices are generally undertaken against those having participated in a cartel between tenderors. Although bid-rigging are involved in the present case, it must be noted that it concerns as well market public as private (...)

The French Competition Authority refers to a bid-rigging case to a criminal Court (Moving of the Guyane military)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to natural persons having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or (...)

The French Competition Authority refers to a bid-rigging case to the public prosecutor (Paris police headquarters)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to natural persons having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or (...)

The French Competition Authority refers for the first time a bid-rigging case to a criminal Court (Bordeaux moving sector)
Innovate Finance (London)
Article L. 420-6, paragraph 1, of the Commercial Code creates the infraction applicable to natural persons having taken part in an anticompetitive practice. This article states: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, organisation or (...)

The French Criminal Supreme Court rules on the first implementations of Art. L. 420-6 C. com. (PFG - Funeral Services of Avignon)
Innovate Finance (London)
Despite the de-penalization of anticompetitive practices, acknowledged by many authors, and implemented by the Order of 1st December 1986, Article L. 420-6of the Commercial Code still states that: “If any natural person fraudulently takes a personal and decisive part in the conception, (...)

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