Antitrust laws, also known as ‘competition laws’ have been put into place to protect consumers. These set of consumer protection laws happen to be incredibly complex though. When multiple business are working together or mergers are happening, it’s essential to get a lawyer on your side to ensure compliance with all antitrust and similar competition laws. If you’re under investigation or being charged with any type of antitrust issue, you also need to get with a lawyer as soon as possible about your case.
Antitrust, Competition Laws and White Collar Crimes
Antitrust law is a very complicated subset of white collar crime. This isn’t the type of crime we typically associate with violence, although the penalties involved can be quite harsh. Some of the various laws involved include the Sherman Act and the Clayton Act. You need a criminal defense attorney with proven antitrust law case experience. These aren’t your typical criminal law cases. They’re not even your typical white collar criminal cases. Often times, there are a variety of different simultaneous investigations going on at the same time, including various government and law enforcement agencies.
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If you’re being investigation in some type of market allocation case, you’re essentially being accused of setting up a monopoly of sorts. This happens when companies or businesses agree, whether officially or unofficially to stay out of each other’s territory. In most cases, we think of set geographic locations as being part of this type of case. This type of anti-competitive business practice has the ability to artificially drive up prices on consumers. They essentially have no other choices for the product or service available. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and other government agencies take market allocation cases and investigations very seriously, so the sooner you talk to a lawyer, the better.
Bid rigging happens when multiple companies are working in cooperation to operate essentially as a cartel. They agree to allow each other to win bids on various auctions, in many cases involving multi-million dollar government contracts. The companies involved essentially prevent any competition from taking place because they’re rigging the game. If you’re under investigation for bid rigging or any similar type of antitrust scheme, you need to get with your lawyer immediately to get the ball rolling on your defense.
Price fixing is exactly what it sounds like and is one of the most common types of antitrust law violations. Similar to bid rigging, price fixing occurs when two or more companies agree to sell their similar products at the same price. They get to maintain margin, and the consumers pays through the teeth for it. Price fixing in just about any form can get you in hot water with the federal government, so if you’re under investigation, you need to seek immediate experienced legal help.
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Multiple Simultaneous Investigations
Where antitrust laws and other white collar crimes are involved, there are typically multiple simultaneous investigations involved. These investigations can be months or even years long in scope. There could be multiple investigative agencies involved, including the FTC and the Department of Justice (DOJ), and in almost all cases, you’re looking at serous felony charges. These aren’t your simple straight forward misdemeanor criminal charges. It doesn’t matter if you’re a first time, non-violent offender either. Since these cases are so complex and can involve a variety of inter-agency investigations and internal investigations, it’s essential to have a lawyer with proven white collar criminal defense case experience.
Additional Charges Associated With Antitrust
A variety of additional charges can be associated with Antitrust violations These can include RICO violations, OSHA violations, bribery charges, tax evasion, environmental crimes, health care crimes, embezzling and a plethora of other white collar crimes. Since these charges are almost exclusively considered felonies, the potential penalties can add up quickly.
When to Contact a Criminal Defense Lawyer
Investigations involving antitrust violations and other white collar crimes can take months and years to build. If you’re under any kind of suspicion or investigation, you need to speak with a lawyer immediately. Don’t wait until you’ve been slapped with charges. The sooner you can get ahead of the game, the better. The charges add up quickly, and the stakes are high. You need a lawyer on your side with proven white collar criminal defense case experience. If you or somebody you love is facing any kind of antitrust charge or another type of white collar crime charge, contact the skilled team at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC at (601) 265-7766 for an immediate case consultation.