On 29 April 2014, the new UK Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) and the Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”) published a new Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).
Building on the previous MoU between the OFT and the SFO, dated October 2003, the new MoU sets out the basis on which both agencies will co-operate to investigate and prosecute criminal cartels in the UK.
The new MoU places greater emphasis on the sharing of intelligence and information between the agencies and ensuring that systems are in place to improve lines of communication and co-operation.
As with the previous MoU, both agencies retain the ability to prosecute criminal cartels, with the SFO to take the lead in circumstances where the case meets it entry criteria. The MoU places clear obligations on each agency to ensure effective decision-making in respect of leniency and immunity, when such decision may impact on other investigations.