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Archived — Ninth individual sentenced in Quebec price-fixing cartel

GATINEAU, October 23, 2009 — The Competition Bureau announced today that a ninth individual has pleaded guilty to criminal charges for conspiring to fix the price of gasoline at the pump in Sherbrooke, Quebec.

Gisèle Durand, the former owner of a service station under the Esso banner in Sherbrooke, was sentenced to four months in jail. The Quebec Superior Court agreed to allow Durand to serve her sentence in the community, given that she has no prior criminal record and the Court's assessment that she does not pose a danger to society. As well, Durand was ordered to make a $20,000 donation to a charitable organization.

Charges were laid in June 2008 against 13 individuals and 11 companies accused of fixing the price of gas at pumps in Victoriaville, Thetford Mines, Magog and Sherbrooke, Quebec. As of today, nine individuals and six companies have pleaded guilty in this case, with fines totalling over $2.7 million. Of the nine individuals who have pleaded guilty, five have been sentenced to terms of imprisonment totalling 48 months.

More information on past convictions and fines related to this cartel can be found on the Bureau's Web site. The Bureau's investigation into potential price-fixing in the retail gasoline market continues in other markets in Canada.

The Competition Bureau is an independent law enforcement agency that contributes to the prosperity of Canadians by protecting and promoting competitive markets and enabling informed consumer choice.

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Information Centre
Competition Bureau
Telephone: 819-997-4282
Toll free: 1-800-348-5358
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