High Court refuses leave for electrical cable cartel appeal

The High Court has dismissed a special leave application by electrical cable manufacturer Prysmian.

The dismissal followed a decision of the Full Federal Court that upheld the trial judge’s finding the company had engaged in cartel conduct relating to the supply of high voltage land cables and accessories to a Snowy Mountains Hydro Electric Scheme project in 2003.

Prysmian, a major international cable manufacturer supplying the energy and telecommunications sectors, had sought special leave to appeal against the Full Federal Court decision handed down in March 2018.

The ACCC alleged, and the court found, Prysmian had entered into and given effect to agreements with competitors, which involved price guidance and project allocation between competing companies.

“The High Court’s decision not to hear this appeal finalises this litigation, with the result that the original findings of cartel conduct and the penalties imposed against Prysmian apply,” ACCC chair Rod Sims said.

“Cartel behaviour, such as price fixing and market sharing, undermines competition and increases the prices for customers and taxpayers.

“The ACCC will always prioritise investigation of cartel conduct causing detriment in Australia.”