Business

Chocolate price-fixing charges stayed against 2 companies

Prosecutors have abandoned charges against two companies and two top executives charged in an eight-year-old investigation into price fixing in the chocolate confectionery business in Canada.

Canadian prosecutors stay cases against Mars and candy distributor ITWAL

Chocolate price-fixing charges were stayed against Mars and candy distributor ITWAL. (Matt Dunham/Associated Press)

Prosecutors have abandoned charges against two companies and two top executives charged in an eight-year-old investigation into price fixing in the chocolate confectionery business in Canada.

The federal Competition Bureau disclosed Thursday that the Public Prosecution Service of Canada had entered a stay of proceedings on Sept. 8 against ITWAL Ltd., a confectionary distributor, as well as its former chief executive, David Glenn Stevens.

Stays were also entered in proceedings against Mars Canada Inc. and against Sandra Martinez, a former president of confectionery for Nestlé Canada Ltd.

Proceedings against Nestlé Canada itself and its former chief executive, Robert Leonidas, are continuing, the bureau said. The charges have not been proven in court.

No reason was give for the Crown's decision.

Although it rarely happens, when charges are stayed, as opposed to withdrawn, the Crown can revive them if it does so within a year of the stay.

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