Antitrust & Competition Policy Blog

Editor: D. Daniel Sokol
University of Florida
Levin College of Law

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Monday, August 8, 2011

Are DOJ Antitrust's Criminal Stats Padded?

Posted by D. Daniel Sokol

Over the weekend, I had a chance to review the Antitrust Division's FY 1999 - FY 2008 Workload Statistics. One thing that caught my eye was that in the most recent fiscal year for which statistics are available, the Division prosecuted more process crimes (i.e., more obstruction cases) than price-fixing cases. The total number of criminal cases in FY 2008 was 54 (id. at 7), with only 26 of those "Restraint of Trade - Criminal Sherman Section 1" cases. The majority of its workload was "Other Criminal Cases" -- not cartel crimes -- for Obstruction of Justice, false statements, etc. -- 28 cases filed in FY 2008. See id. at 8.

Let me also note that overall, the criminal record at DOJ is the crown jewel of the Division.  The leniency program has brough to light some very bad illegal conduct.  I do not mean to diminish the good work that the Division has done, just to note some limitations.  I have a forthcoming article that suggests some limits to the leniency program and ways to potentially strengthen cartel enforcement.  This summer I have been working on a follow-up article that extends my analysis in new directions.  I'll blog more about these papers when I post them on SSRN.

Download DOJ Antitrust Division Workload Statistics - FY 1999 to FY 2008

http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/antitrustprof_blog/2011/08/are-doj-antitrusts-criminal-stats-padded.html

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Comments

I suppose prosecution for obstruction and false statement is the necessary stick to make more inviting the carrot of the leniency program.

Posted by: PG | Aug 10, 2011 1:11:47 AM

The FY2009 report is out. But why has the FY2010 report been delayed now 11 months after the end of the fiscal year -- much longer than normal? What bad news does it contain for the Varney period?

Posted by: jmc | Aug 10, 2011 7:32:56 AM

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