Waste companies Aussie Skips Recycling and Aussie Skips Bin Services (together Aussie Skips) have been charged with two criminal cartel offences relating to price fixing for demolition waste services in Sydney. Aussie Skips’ chief executive Emmanuel Roussakis has also been charged with one criminal cartel offence for his involvement in the alleged conduct.
Aussie Skips and Mr Roussakis were charged with these offences after an investigation by the ACCC and referral to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (CDPP).
These charges follow guilty pleas by waste company Bingo Industries and its former managing director and chief executive Daniel Tartak to criminal cartel offences for their involvement in the same alleged cartel.
It is alleged that in mid-2019, Aussie Skips and Bingo agreed to increase and fix prices for the supply of skip bins and processing services for building and demolition waste in Sydney.
“Cartel conduct is a serious offence which causes significant damage to competition, to consumers and to the wider economy,” ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh.
“The ACCC will continue to investigate and take enforcement action for cartel conduct following tip-offs from insiders, whistleblowers, customers and others. Enforcement action can include civil proceedings for pecuniary penalties or, as in this case, referral to the CDPP for potential criminal prosecution.”
These matters will be listed for case management in the Federal Court at a later stage.
As these are criminal matters currently before the Court, the ACCC will not provide further comment at this time.
Aussie Skips Bin Services and Aussie Skips Recycling are Sydney-based waste management businesses that supply skip bins and waste processing services for building and demolition waste respectively.
Bingo is a waste management company providing landfill, waste processing and skip bin services throughout New South Wales, Victoria and Queensland.
Note to editors
The ACCC investigates cartel conduct, manages the immunity process and, in respect of civil cartel contraventions, takes proceedings in the Federal Court.
The ACCC works to detect cartels including through education programs, proactive intelligence gathering and data assessment and working with overseas counterparts to identify cartels that operate on a global level.
The ACCC also manages an immunity program that enables past or present cartel members to confess their actions and cooperate with investigations in exchange for immunity from ACCC-initiated civil and (through the CDPP) criminal proceedings.
Anyone who thinks they may be involved in cartel conduct is urged to call the ACCC Cartel Immunity Hotline on (02) 9230 3894. More information about the immunity process is available on the ACCC website at Cartels.
You can also report cartel conduct by using the anonymous cartel portal. The CDPP is responsible for prosecuting criminal cartel offences in accordance with the Prosecution Policy of the Commonwealth.
The ACCC refers serious cartel conduct to the CDPP for consideration of prosecution in accordance with the Memorandum of Understanding between the CDPP and the ACCC regarding Serious Cartel Conduct.
An individual convicted of a criminal cartel offence may be sentenced to up to 10 years’ imprisonment or fined up to $444,000, or both.
For corporations, the maximum fine for each criminal cartel offence before 9 November 2022 is the greater of:
- $10 million
- three times the total benefit that has been obtained and which is reasonably attributable to the commission of the offence, or
- if the value of the benefit obtained cannot be determined, 10 per cent of the corporation’s annual turnover connected with Australia.
These maximum fines are applicable to the charges against Aussie Skips.
For offences that occur after 9 November 2022, substantially higher maximum fines apply.
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