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Fourth Guilty Plea in the Competition Bureau's Investigation in Ocean Freight Industry

Overseas Container Forwarding, Inc. Fined $675,000

OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 04/09/14 -- Competition Bureau

Following a Competition Bureau investigation in the ocean freight industry in Canada, Overseas Container Forwarding, Inc. (OCF) pleaded guilty to two counts under the criminal conspiracy provision of the Competition Act for its participation in a price-fixing cartel related to various surcharges, including surcharges for currency exchange rate fluctuations and fuel. OCF was fined $675,000 by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice in Ottawa and is required to set-up a corporate compliance program under the terms of a prohibition order.

OCF agreed or arranged with Elvio Lancione, Michael Teixeira and ECU Line Canada Inc. (ECU), and other participants, on the rates, or formulas used to calculate the rates, of various surcharges between January 1, 2005 and March 6, 2011 for the supply of non-vessel operating common carrier (NVOCC) export consolidation services from Canada to various foreign destinations.

On April 8, 2014, Elvio Lancione, Michael Teixeira and ECU also pleaded guilty to charges related to the fixing of surcharges for the supply of export consolidation services.

Quick Facts


--  The Bureau began investigating this cartel in December 2009 once it
    became aware of it by way of its Immunity Program. The investigation is
    also benefitting from the cooperation of companies under the Bureau's
    Leniency Program, including OCF.
--  NVOCCs arrange the consolidation of less-than-container load shipments
    into containers, the shipment of these containers by ocean, and the
    deconsolidation of the containers at the destination.
--  Cartels have a negative impact on all Canadians. They deprive customers
    of such organizations of the benefits of competitive markets, such as
    lower prices.

Quotes

"Price-fixing represents one of the most egregious forms of anti-competitive behaviour and today's guilty plea sends a clear message that price-fixing activities will not be tolerated in Canada."

John Pecman, Commissioner of Competition

Related Information

- Immunity Program

- Leniency Program

- Whistleblowing Initiative

- Corporate Compliance

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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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