May 28, 2020

Neguse, Nadler, Cicilline, Jordan and Sensenbrenner Introduce Bipartisan Legislation to Permanently Reauthorize a Critical Antitrust Program

Washington D.C.—Today, Congressman Joe Neguse (D-CO), along with Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman Jim Jordan (R-OH), Ranking Member of the House Judiciary Committee, Congressman David Cicilline (D-RI), Chair of the Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commericial and Administrative Law and Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI), Ranking Member for the Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law introduced the Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement and Reform Permanent Extension Act, bipartisan legislation which would repeal the sunset provision in the Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement and Reform Act (ACPERA). The original law is set to sunset on June 22, 2020 without Congressional action. ACPERA strengthens public and private antitrust enforcement by providing incentives to antitrust violators to self-report the violations to the Justice Department and cooperate fully with government prosecutors and private litigants, as well as limiting the liability for civil damages claims in antitrust actions for a qualifying leniency applicant. The bill introduced by Congressman Neguse and the other lawmakers would incentivize participation in the DOJ Antitrust Division’s leniency program which is a critical tool in detecting and prosecuting illegal cartel activity. 

“ACPERA is an important law that strengthens antitrust enforcement and it is critical that we do not let it expire this year,” said Neguse. “I am proud to introduce the Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement and Reform Permanent Extension Act today alongside a bipartisan coalition from the House Judiciary Committee to extend this important law and provide renewed detection and prosecution of illegal antitrust activity." 

“The Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement and Reform Act has aided antitrust enforcers in uncovering cartels and stopping criminal antitrust activity,” Chairman Nadler said.  “Criminal enforcement of the antitrust laws—including combatting cartel behavior—must be a priority. I am pleased to support this legislation to reauthorize this important law.”

“We should not allow ACPERA to expire this year. This is an important law that helps antitrust enforcers detect and fight cartels,” said Cicilline. “I’m grateful that my friend, Mr. Neguse, is introducing legislation to reauthorize this law to ensure the Department of Justice continues to have the tools it needs to prosecute companies that violate the antitrust laws and rip off consumers. I am proud to join him in this effort.”

View text of the bill here.