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Suspended sentence for former director convicted of cartel offences (15 September 2015)

Date: 15/09/2015
Duncan Lewis, Legal News Solicitors, Suspended sentence for former director convicted of cartel offences

A former company director convicted of charges relating to a criminal cartel has been sentenced at Southwark Crown Court.

Nigel Snee – the former Managing Director of Franklin Hodge Industries –
was arrested in 2012 at the start of an investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) predecessor, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT).

He co-operated with the investigation and in January 2014 pleaded guilty to dishonestly agreeing with others to fix prices, divide up customers and rig bids between 2005 and 2012, in respect of the supply in the UK of galvanised steel tanks for water storage.

Mr Snee subsequently acted as a witness for the CMA in the prosecution of two other alleged members of the cartel, who were both acquitted in June 2015.

Mr Snee’s co-operation was taken into account at sentencing and on Monday (14/09/15) at Southwark Crown Court in south London, he was given a six-month prison sentence suspended for 12 months – and ordered to carry out 120 hours of community service within 12 months.

At sentencing, His Honour Justice Goymer remarked that “the economic damage done by cartels is such that those involved must expect prison sentences”.

He indicated that his starting point in the case was that a prison sentence of two years was appropriate – but taking into account Mr Snee’s early guilty plea, his personal mitigation, and the extent of his voluntary co-operation as a witness, his sentence was reduced by the “higher end” discount of 75%.

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