The Tribunal has granted Sainsbury’s limited rights to intervene in support of the OFT in six appeal cases that are before the Tribunal against the OFT’s decision over tobacco retail pricing. Sainsbury’s had been an addressee of the OFT’s decision and was found by the OFT to have engaged in unlawful anti-competitive conduct but was granted full immunity from penalty under the OFT’s leniency programme.

The Tribunal had to assess whether Sainsbury’s had an interest sufficient to justify the granting of such an intervention. The Tribunal concluded that Sainsbury’s had demonstrated a sufficient interest both in order to protect their position against any recovery of costs and for the use of any documents in which they claim privilege or confidentiality. The Tribunal rejected any wider intervention by Sainsbury’s.