Competition Bureau invites feedback on revisions to its Immunity Program
October 26, 2017 – OTTAWA, ON – Competition Bureau
The Competition Bureau is releasing for comment a revised version of its Immunity Program, the Bureau’s best weapons to combat criminal anticompetitive agreements. Under the Immunity Program, a party may receive immunity from prosecution from the Director of Public Prosecutions if the party discloses to the Competition Bureau an offence not yet detected or provides evidence that warrants a referral to the Public Prosecution Service of Canada. In addition, the party must cooperate with the Bureau and in any subsequent prosecution.
The program is being updated to increase transparency and predictability in light of legal and policy developments. While much of the program remains largely intact, these proposed revisions will allow the Bureau and the Public Prosecution Service of Canada to be prosecution-ready by requiring that credible and reliable evidence be provided earlier in the process.
The proposed changes to the program include the following:
- Automatic coverage under a corporate immunity agreement for all directors, officers and employees will no longer be provided. Instead, individuals that require immunity will need to demonstrate their knowledge of the conduct in question and their willingness to cooperate with the Bureau’s investigation.
- Documentary and testimonial evidence will be provided under an Interim Grant of Immunity (IGI). Final immunity will be provided when the applicant’s cooperation and assistance is no longer required.
- Witness interviews may be conducted under oath and may be video or audio recorded. Proffers may also be audio recorded.
In addition, the Program is being made more comprehensive by including the frequently asked questions that have been developed over time within the program content.
Interested parties are invited to provide their views on the proposed changes to the Immunity Program no later than January 22, 2018 by sending them by email or mail to the coordinates below:
Cartels and Deceptive Marketing Practices Branch
50 Victoria Street
Responses will be posted on the Bureau’s website, unless specifically requested that they be kept confidential.
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The Competition Bureau, as an independent law enforcement agency, ensures that Canadian businesses and consumers prosper in a competitive and innovative marketplace.
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