A tension in the U.S. approach to international cartel enforcement: At what point does aggressive pursuit of individuals undercut the corporate leniency program?
01 January 2012Competition Law International
As competition authorities around the world consider criminalizing cartel activity, they face important — and often highly divisive — questions about whether and what type of criminal sanctions are appropriate for individuals. Often they look to the United States enforcement program for guidance. In recent years, the U.S. has increased its pursuit of individual offenders, but this zealousness about individual punishment must be balanced against other enforcement goals to ensure that the perceived deterrent value of putting cartelists in prison is not outweighed by the potential chilling effect this weapon’s hawkish or inconsistent use may have on cartel enforcement more generally.