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'Cartels Hotline' launched on back of disgraced agencies' case

The Competition and Markets Authority - which yesterday released details of an infamous cartel case involving estate agencies - has now launched a Cartels Hotline in which whistleblowers could earn a reward of up to £100,000.

Yesterday we reported on the CMA's release of the details of the now-infamous 2015 case where a series of agencies in Somerset were found to have agreed to fix their minimum commission at 1.5 per cent.

Now, on the back of that, the CMA has relaunched its Cartels Hotline as part of its Stop Cartels campaign.

The promotional material says that "if you know about a cartel - whether you're directly involved or have witnessed one - we need to know," giving a confidential telephone number on 020 3738 6833 and email cartelshotline@cma.gsi.gov.uk.

It says those involved in cartels can apply for leniency if they inform the CMA, while those who have information but are not directly involved could earn a reward of up to £100,000. 

The campaign material then gives 10 case studies of cartels that have been declared illegal and busted by the CMA - with the Somerset estate agents' cartel top of the list.

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