Cartel and Criminal Antitrust Investigations

The criminal cartel offence applies to an individual who agrees to create or participate in arrangements involving price fixing, market/customer sharing, bid-rigging or output limitation (cartel behavior). Individuals found guilty of an offense can face imprisonment, unlimited financial penalties and disqualification as director. We assist all kinds of parties in investigations covering a wide range of allegations such as procurement fraud, foreign corrupt practices, bribery, money laundering, export controls violations, abuse of dominance cases, etc.

Antitrust Dawn Raids

Antitrust dawn raids are unannounced inspections of offices or residences by competition or other regulatory authorities to look for evidence of antitrust violations. Typically, dawn raids result in the seizure of documents, equipment, records, and data, and they may involve the questioning of personnel or individuals regarding the alleged infringement. Raids can span from a few hours to more than a week depending on the nature of the allegations, scope of investigation, and site. Dawn raids have become a popular tool for competition authorities around the globe. Although differences in methodology exist, agency officials generally have extensive powers to conduct raids. Often, officials are free to make copies of documents and data, and are also permitted to extend their search beyond the physical premises and investigate companies’ information technology networks – including hard drives and cloud data storage. 

The GTAC Dawn Raid Preparation and Response Checklist

To secure evidence of antitrust violations, competition enforcement authorities in the U.S. and throughout Europe continue to stage unannounced raids on business sites. Searches have also targeted private residences, cars and trucks, etc. Our Dawn Raid Preparation and Response Checklist outlines a protocol companies should have in place and implement in the event of a dawn raid in connection with a federal antitrust investigation.

In the aftermath of a dawn raid, we give focused advice about next steps, including assessing whether to carry out an Internal Investigation, identifying and recording what has been taken and making sure business-critical material will be returned.

Contact us for more information.