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Defective Products: Will Criminal Penalties Ensure Corporate Accountability?

The ultimate question before the Committee today is whether or not criminal penalties will ensure corporate accountability. Will the threat of jail time serve as an effective deterrent in preventing dangerous products from reaching the hands of consumers? Will it force manufacturers to think twice? Would such legislation have prevented Ford/Firestone? Before we answer those questions, I believe that it’s critical to look at why legislation targeted at marketplace accountability is necessary for the consumer interest–which based on my experiences, I believe to be very much the case.