Members of Citroën Dealers Association Cartel Convicted of Price Fixing

Outcome of investigation

In total 14 convictions, comprising eight individuals and six undertakings, were secured by the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) in relation to an investigation conducted by the Competition Authority (Authority), from the mid-1990’s to 2007, involving a price fixing cartel in the sale of Citroën cars.

Outline of Case

Arising out of a series of investigations into car dealerships that involved various brands of car in the mid-1990's, the Authority opened a case around 2002. The case focused on Citroën dealerships. A series of complaints formed the groundwork and came from identified and anonymous sources, as well as the assistance of an immunity applicant.

The allegations centred on price-fixing, in particular a collusion to fix prices of new Citroën vehicles, second hand cars, accessories including metallic paint options and delivery charges. The agreement was policed by the Secretary of the Citroën Dealers Association who closely monitored participant-members prices.

In 2007 the DPP preferred price fixing charges against the named dealerships, individual officers and directors of the Citroen dealerships. In addition, the DPP preferred charges of aiding and abetting the commission of the offence of price fixing against the Secretary of the Citroën Dealers Association.

Read the judgment in the Citroën Dealers Association case, DPP v Patrick Duffy & Duffy Motors (Newbridge) Limited of 7 May 2009.

 

Table of cases below:

 

Defendant

Status

Date Sentenced

Result

James Durrigan & Sons Limited

Pleaded guilty in the Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

08/05/2008

€12,000 fine

James Durrigan

Pleaded guilty in the Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

08/05/2008

Three months prison sentence – suspended for two years

Ravenslodge Trading Limited

T/A Jack Doran Motors

Pleaded guilty in the Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

28/10/2008

€20,000 fine

Jack Doran

Pleaded guilty in the Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

28/10/2008

Three months prison sentence – suspended for five years

Duffy Motors (Newbridge) Limited

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

23/03/2009

€50,000 fine

Patrick Duffy

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

23/03/2009

Six months and nine months prison sentences – suspended for five years. Total of €50,000 fines

Bursey Peppard Limited

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

03/04/2009

€80,000 fine

James Bursey

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

03/04/2009

Six months and nine months sentences – suspended for five years. Total of €80,000 fines. Prison term of 28 days imposed for non-payment of the fine

Finglas Motors (M50) Limited

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

17/06/2009

€35,000 fine

Bernard Byrne

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

17/06/2009

Nine months prison sentence – suspended for one year. €2,000 fine.

Gowan Motors (Parkgate) Limited

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

22/06/2009

€30,000 fine

Michael Patrick Gibbs

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

22/06/2009

Six months prison sentence – suspended for three years. €30,000 fine.

Brian Smyth

Pleaded guilty in Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the price fixing charges

22/06/2009

Six months prison sentence – suspended for three years. €30,000 fine.

John McGlynn

Pleaded guilty in the Central Criminal Court to aiding and abetting the commission of the offence of price fixing

27/11/2009

Six months and nine months prison sentences – suspended for five years. €30,000 fine

Relevant provision

Section 4 of both the Competition Act 2002

Section 4 (1) of the Competition Act 1991

Sections 2 and 3(4)(a) of the Competition (Amendment) Act 1996

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