HCC’s investigations during the lockdown – procedural rights of businesses during a (lock)dawn raid

Despite the strict confinement measures in Greece, the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) has initiated several investigations during the current lockdown. Not only has it sent requests for information to a large number of companies active in the health care products market, it has also conducted two dawn raids – one in the food sector and one in the press distribution market. Such unannounced inspections are known for their effectiveness in detecting secret cartels and other unlawful practices. However, due to their intrusive nature, businesses under investigation are normally protected by procedural safeguards guaranteeing the fairness of the process. Ensuring and respecting these rights might be far more challenging during a lockdown situation.

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