Building Service Industry Abuses

The Commission’s June 1970 public hearing (reported in its 1970 Annual Report) on restraints of trade and other abusive practices in the building service industry aroused the interest of the United States Senate Commerce Committee. The committee invited the SCI to testify at its 1972 public hearings on organized crime in interstate commerce. As a result of that testimony, the Antitrust Division of the United States Justice Department, with assistance from the SCI, began an investigation into an association which allocated territories and customers to various member building service maintenance companies in New Jersey. In May 1974, a Federal Grand Jury indicted 12 companies and 17 officials for conspiring to shut out competition in the industry. The companies were the same as those involved in the SCI’s public hearings. On Oct. 25, 1977, the defendants agreed to a consent judgment to abandon the practices alleged against them. Earlier, the government’s criminal action against the defendants was completed in March 1976, by which time one company had pleaded guilty to the charges and the other defendants had pleaded no contest. Fines totaling $233,000 were levied.

Additionally, after the Senate Commerce Committee’s hearings, the U.S. General Services Administration amended its regulations to bar purchases of certain cleansing products sold by organized crime figures (as exposed by the SCI investigation).


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Higher Education: Vulnerable to Abuse

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