Cartel operators safe from jail for two years

Prosecutions of business cartel directors under new powers are not expected
for at least two years, according to Office of Fair Trading head John Fingleton.

The Enterprise Act, which came into force in 2003, gave the OFT powers to
prosecute businesses that operated cartels, with directors potentially jailed
for up to five years if found guilty of involvement. But Fingleton said that
although the OFT was ramping up efforts to use its powers, it had not yet
pursued criminal prosecutions until now partly because it was unable to
prosecute offences committed before June 2003.
He said the OFT was beginning criminal investigations now, but it would be two
or three years before any cases reached court, according to the Times.

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