Irving faces criminal charges for price-fixing in Quebec
Published Friday, September 28, 2012 4:43PM EDT
MONTREAL—Irving Oil and its Quebec manager are facing criminal charges over the alleged price-fixing of gasoline in Victoriaville, Thetford Mines and Sherbrooke.
The federal Competition Bureau announced three charges on Friday against Serge Parent and three charges against the New Brunswick-based oil company. The announcement was the outcome of a major investigation made public by the Bureau in 2008.
Wiretaps and warrants were used to prove that retailers in Quebec were in communication with each other to decide on the price to charge consumers at the pump. So far, 39 people and 15 companies have faced charges as part of the investigation.
Of the 39 people charged, 27 have pleaded guilty, with six facing prison time representing a total of 54 months behind bars. For the remainder, fines have so far surpassed $3 million.
Irving Oil operates over 800 retail outlets across Eastern Canada and New England.
The Competition Bureau is looking to reclaim $10 million from the gas cartel as damages for drivers affected by the artificially high prices.
—with files from The Canadian Press.