Updated: The former boss of waste management firm Bingo Industries will have to pay $100,000 and perform 400 hours of community service after admitting criminal cartel conduct over an illegal price-fixing scheme.

The waste outfit also pleaded guilty to criminal cartel offences over the same scheme and was fined a combined $30 million.

Daniel Tartak, the company’s ex-managing director and chief executive, pleaded guilty in 2022 to two cartel offences after an investigation by the competition watchdog.

Tartak was handed a two-year prison sentence by the Federal Court on Friday, to be served in the community under an intensive correction order.

The son of Bingo founder, Tony Tartak, was also disqualified from managing a corporation for five years.

Bingo agreed with competitor Aussie Skip Bin Services to fix prices for supplying bins for building and demolition waste in Sydney during 2019 while Daniel Tartak was in charge of the company.

In delivering the sentences, Justice Michael Wigney said the agreement likely resulted in customers paying more for Bingo’s services than they otherwise would have.

“Cartels are widely condemned as the most egregious form of anti-competitive behaviour,” Justice Wigney said.

“At its heart, a cartel is an agreement between competitors not to compete.”

Justice Wigney said Bingo was able to increase its prices, and profit from those increased prices, without the usual associated risk of losing customers.

The court heard in May 2019 Tartak made agreements with Aussie Skip chief executive Emmanuel Roussakis concerning the prices at which their respective companies would provide collection and processing services.

The arrangements were effectively abandoned by about September 2019, the court was told.

“There could be no doubt that it was likely that some customers paid more than they otherwise would have paid for collection services and processing services as a result of the anti-competitive arrangements,” Justice Wigney said.

“Mr Tartak was no doubt aware of the likely effects of the arrangements.”

Aussie Skip and Mr Roussakis also pleaded guilty to cartel offences.

Update: Mr. Roussakis received an 18-month prison sentence for a criminal cartel offense, to be served as an intensive correction order, along with 300 hours of community service. Additionally, he was fined $75,000 and prohibited from managing corporations for five years.

Justice Wigney said to his credit, Mr Tartak co-operated with investigators and pleaded guilty at the earliest possible time, avoiding the need for a lengthy trial.

An Australian Competition and Consumer Commission probe uncovered the scheme, which affected the prices customers paid for the processing of building waste across Sydney.

The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions laid the charges after a referral from the commission.

Bingo faced a maximum fine of $40 million, while Tartak faced a maximum 10-year jail sentence and $420,000 fine.

Source: AAP