ARTICLES: COMPETITION INQUIRIES - INVESTIGATION POWERS - DIGITAL EVIDENCE GATHERING METHODS - FRENCH INVESTIGATION PRACTICE

Digital evidence in competition enquiries: The French regime at stakes

The new Competition Authority is now vested with investigation powers and begins effectively implementing them. Some changes might follow in the methods and practical means implemented so far by the National Division for Competition Investigations of the Ministry for the Economy. The angle will naturally be different compared to a division dedicated to investigations. Among the likely changes, it would be relevant to open the debate on digital evidence gathering methods. The French investigation practice in this respect are indeed rather distant from other authorities - notably the EC Commission - and raise a number of issues of conformity and also of consistency all through the procedure before the Authority. Such issues now definitely need to be addressed.

See also: Nathalie Jalabert-Doury, Dirk Van Erps, Digital evidence gathering : An update, Concurrences N° 2-2013, art. N° 52014, pp. 213-219

*This article is an automatic translation of the original article, provided here for your convenience. Read the original article. 1. The Economic Modernisation Law (LME) introduced a number of new features regarding visits and seizures carried out for the application of competition rules. The right to the presence of a lawyer has been expressly recognized, the remedies have been redesigned following the Ravon judgment, and the Competition Authority has been given full capacity to carry out the investigations necessary for the application of the rules for which it is responsible, and it will do so even now in the first instance. 2. Indeed, prior to the EML, the Rapporteurs of the Competition Council had the same investigative powers as the officers of the DGCCRF. In practice,

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Nathalie Jalabert-Doury, Digital evidence in competition enquiries: The French regime at stakes, May 2009, Concurrences N° 2-2009, Art. N° 25897, pp. 69-77

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