The UK Parliament is considering legislation aimed at increasing prosecutions under the cartel offense. The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill redefines the criminal cartel offense by removing the current requirement to prove that the defendant acted “dishonestly.” As the bill has progressed through Parliament, safeguards have been added, including two new defenses. It will be a defense if a person can show that: (i) at the time of making the cartel arrangements, he did not intend to conceal their nature from customers or the UK regulator; and/or (ii) before making the agreement, he took reasonable steps to ensure the nature of the arrangements would be disclosed to professional legal advisers for the purpose of obtaining advice. In addition, a person will not have committed the cartel offense if customers are given relevant information about the arrangements before they enter into supply agreements; where bid-rigging arrangements are disclosed to the person requesting bids at or before the time a bid is made; or where relevant information about the arrangements are published before they are implemented. Moreover, the UK competition regulator will be obliged to consult and publish guidance on the principles that will be used when deciding whether to prosecute. The bill was approved by the House of Commons on Oct. 17, 2012, and is now being debated in Parliament’s upper chamber, the House of Lords. Other changes to be implemented by the bill include the consolidation of the UK’s two competition authorities, the Office of Fair Trading and the Competition Commission.