Criminalization of Competition Law Enforcement
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Criminalization of Competition Law Enforcement

Economic and Legal Implications for the EU Member States

Edited by Katalin J. Cseres, Maarten Pieter Schinkel and Floris O.W. Vogelaar

This timely book brings together contributions from prominent scholars and practitioners to the ongoing debate on the criminalization of competition law enforcement. Recognizing that existing remedies and sanctions may be insufficient to deter breaches of competition law, several EU Member States have followed the US example and introduced pecuniary penalties for executives, professional disqualification orders, and even jail sentences. Addressing issues such as unsolved legal puzzles, standard of proof, leniency programs and internal cartel stability, this book is a marker for future policy debate.
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Chapter 2: Criminal Competition Law Enforcement: Taking Stock on the Debate

Claus-Dieter Ehlermann


Claus-Dieter Ehlermann 1 SUBJECT MATTER OF INTRODUCTION When Professor Vogelaar invited me to this conference, I accepted because criminalization is an old personal ‘hobby’ of mine. I have to admit, however, to never having done any serious research in the field of sanctions and in particular criminal law sanctions. Nor have I ever participated in any policy debate on criminalization (neither at EU nor at Member State level). Finally, I do not have extensive experience with leniency programmes (neither at EU level, nor as a practising lawyer). My most relevant experience for this conference is a Competition Law and Policy Workshop organized at the EUI in Florence in June 2001.1 On reflecting on the most valuable contribution that I could bring to this particular conference, I thought that it would be to (a) build a bridge between the June 2001 Workshop and today’s conference; (b) compare the situation in June 2001 with the situation today; and (c) speculate about the probable evolution of the law and of attitudes in the years to come. 2 THE EUI WORKSHOP IN FLORENCE IN JUNE 2001 The June 2001 EUI Workshop centred on private enforcement of competition law. Criminalization occupied only 20 per cent of the time and was somewhat extraneous to the main subject of the workshop. I got interested in criminalization of competition law as a result of my past personal experiences in the Commission, first as Head of the Legal Service and later as Director General of DG IV. In...

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