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Why I Think the Antitrust Division Should Reconsider Its Policy on No Notice/No Target Letter Indictments

 |  July 30, 2021

By: Robert Connolly (Cartel Capers)

Acting Assistant Attorney General Richard Powers recently delivered (virtually) prepared remarks covering several criminal enforcement topics including: Compliance; Deferred Prosecution Agreements and Engagement with Targets on Charging Decisions.

In his remarks about “Engagement With Targets on Charging Decisions” Mr. Powers explains that an individual about to be indicted may not receive notice via a target letter if the Division staff believes defense counsel has not been “interested in meaningful good-faith interactions.”  While there have always been exceptions to sending a target letter based on the need for secrecy, it has, to my knowledge, never been the Antitrust Division’s policy to not issue a target letter based on what staff attorneys believe to be uncooperative conduct by defense counsel. This is too subjective a standard, improperly punishes an individual about to be indicted, and is inconsistent with the Antitrust Division’s well-earned reputation for civility and fair play…