CIMA+ ordered to pay $3.2M in bid-rigging settlement
To date, the investigation has led to more than $12 million in payments by six colluding firms.
Following a Competition Bureau Canada investigation, a settlement has been filed today with the Superior Court of Quebec between the Public Prosecution Service of Canada and engineering firm CIMA+. As part of the settlement, the firm has been ordered to pay $3.2 million over the next four years to the Receiver General of Canada for bid-rigging on municipal infrastructure contracts in Quebec.
The settlement, which takes into account CIMA+’s previously reimbursed overpayments through the provincial government’s voluntary program, ends the bureau’s investigation of the firm’s role in a scheme that targeted contracts in Quebec City, Montreal, Laval, St-Eustache and Gatineau between 2003 and 2011.
To date, the investigation has led to more than $12 million in payments by six colluding firms for their respective roles in the scheme, including Genivar (now WSP Canada, $4 million), Dessau (assets now part of Stantec, $1.9 million), Roche Groupe-conseil (now Norda Stelo, $750,000), SNC-Lavalin ($1.9 million) and Génius Conseil ($300,000). The investigation also resulted in guilty pleas by four former executives of CIMA+, Genivar and Dessau for bid-rigging on infrastructure contracts in Gatineau; they received conditional prison sentences totalling five years and 11 months and court-ordered community service totalling 260 hours.
“There is a price to be paid by those who defraud taxpayers by rigging bids on municipal contracts,” says Matthew Boswell, commissioner of competition. “This latest settlement is a reminder we will continue to pursue all those involved in such criminal schemes.”
The CIMA+ settlement involves no charges against the firm, which the court has also ordered to maintain a corporate compliance program designed to prevent further anticompetitive activities by its employees.