Three companies and five individuals have been named in proceedings filed in the Federal Court alleging price-fixing, market sharing and resale price maintenance.

Named in the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission* statement of claim are: Cromford Pty Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Washington H. Soul Pattinson Limited; Australian Film and Pipe Manufacturers, a business of Columbus Merchants Pty Limited; and Anross Investments Pty Limited. Individuals named in the proceedings are Neville McDonnell, General Manager of Cromford; Kim Jones, National Sales Manager of Cromford; Howard Wilkie, Director of Columbus Merchants; Maurice Lewis, General Manager of Australian Film and Pipe Manufacturers; and Kenneth Murray, Director of Anross Investments.

The ACCC alleges that since September of 1991 Cromford and Columbus Merchants entered into a price-fixing and market sharing arrangement for both the supply of polythene building film and for the acquisition of polythene scrap plastic which is an essential raw material in the production of polythene building film. Polythene building film is widely used throughout Australia in the domestic and commercial building industry as a vapour barrier under concrete slabs and pavements.

It is further alleged that Cromford and Anross Investments attempted to induce Australian Film and Pipe to engage in resale price maintenance in relation to the supply of polythene building film to Australian Film and Pipe distributors.

The ACCC is seeking penalties and injunctions.