, employees decide alone to sell rotten meat, or tamper with the exhaust gas data, says justice Minister, Christine Lambrecht. Therefore, companies should be in the case of offences soon harder prosecuted. Critics fear that for some, this could be the death knell.
Berlin (dpa) - Whether rotten meat scandals, the Diesel fraud on the part of VW or serious environmental pollution: can be companies for violations of the law from their ranks only rudimentary prosecuted - even if they benefit greatly from it.
wants to change the Federal government is now: Large enterprises only significantly higher fines don't threaten, they should also be stronger for the criminal acts of their staff.
"must not be pushed The responsibility on the Individual, if company a criminal is traded," said justice Minister Christine Lambrecht (SPD) on the Tuesday following the decision by the Federal government. In cases such as the exhaust gas scandal of Volkswagen is clear: "not only individuals, but companies act is criminal."
How could react the judiciary in such cases so far?
again and again the employees came in the past from large companies due to corruption, fraud, or pollution of the environment before the court. Against the company itself but could be imposed - in addition to the Skimming of illegal profits, only fines. These are legally capped at 10 million euros - which is likely to startle corporations with billions in revenue, hardly. Another Problem: Many of the deeds in connection with German companies abroad could not be traced.
What are the changes now?
't need to in the Future to determine the state Prosecutor against the responsible managers and Employees, but also against the company itself. Previously, they could decide individually. In addition to the fine in the case of large companies with a turnover. Companies with an annual turnover of more than € 100 million must then expect that you will have to pull the trigger up to 10 percent of sales. The fines can increase to two-digit billion sums. In addition, foreign countries are recorded deeds for the benefit of a German company.
, it Is not unfair, if companies need to for the missteps of Individual pay?
Often crime is the use of illegal behaviour of the employer more than the employee, argues the Ministry of justice - for example, if someone pays a bribe to pull a job on Land. The new rules will in principle apply in the case of offences by executives such as Board members or business leaders. In the case of regular employees, it depends on whether the managers can make it difficult to the fact, not by better supervision, at least much would have.
What have the Victims of the new rules?
Who was cheated by a company, such as investors or buyers of wrong excellent product so far must ride self-compensation in the first place. In the future, the state should be able to cancel the punishable profit and Concerned to compensate. This especially makes a difference if you as a dupe, a relatively small amount of damage, you probably wouldn't pull itself in court.
the new sanctions impact on customers, employees and shareholders?
of Course, any sanctions will be a burden to the company concerned, the Ministry of justice - the only way you could be at all effective. In order to have any effect on the profit, so that capital owners earn less. In some cases, it could also lead to cuts for employees - under certain circumstances, employees can lose their jobs, have no influence on the illegal machinations. Such effects would have to be taken into account when the court put the penalty.
How big is the Problem with business crime at all?
The Federal criminal police office for the year 2018 by a well-known damage of around 3.36 billion euros, around 50 000 cases were registered from. This includes the unauthorized collaboration from competitors, which is not affected by the plans of the Federal government, but it belongs. Overall crime makes the economy less than one percent of the cases in the criminal statistics caused but a comparatively high damage.
What if companies do their own investigations?
This is according to the Ministry of justice to report suspected criminal offences, at least in the case of large companies, in the meantime, the rule - usually lawyers or accountants. In the future, such studies should have a criminal in mitigation of punishment if certain rules are adhered to. For example, the survey of employees must be fair and transparent.
What keeps the economy of the plans?
Large organisations are already gone before the decision of the Federal government's storm. It threatened, especially in the light of the corona of a crisis - an "undue burden," he warned about the employers ' Association BDA, the German retail Association HDE and the German chambers of industry and Commerce (DIHK). For companies with a high turnover, but low profit margin, the proposed sanctions a "death penalty would be". Also, FDP parliamentary group, Vice-Stephan Thomae-criticized, self-organization, which threatens all of the Compliance actions complied with, would in your economic existence. The German judges Association, was also skeptical that the law is to be implemented with the current staffing resources.
next, the bill goes to the Bundestag and the Bundesrat. However, even after their consent, the new sanctions should not be applied the same. The company and the justice to get two years time, the new rules set.
IW Köln economic crime
Federal situation report of the BKA to economic crimeUpdated Date: 17 June 2020, 09:33