Watchdog probes panel beating firms

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Johannesburg - The Competition Commission is conducting a search and seizure operation at three companies operating in the auto panel beating sector in Pretoria, it said on Friday.

“The raid is underway at Precision and Sons and Eldan Auto Body, both in Pretoria West, and at Vehicle Accident Assessment Centre in Centurion,” said spokesman Themba Mathebula.

He said the commission obtained warrants to search the premises from the High Court in Pretoria.

The raid formed part of the commission's investigation into alleged collusive conduct in the market by auto body repairers.

Precision and Eldan are approved auto body repairers, while VAAC is an assessment centre which renders vehicle assessment services to customers of both Precision and Eldan.

Documents and electronic data would be seized and analysed together with other information already gathered to determine whether a contravention of the Competition Act had taken place.

Mathebula said the inventories of what was discovered at the companies would be made known next week. - Sapa

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