Australia’s competition and consumer watchdog has launched legal action to enforce the payment of $50,000 by former Artorios Ink director over consumer law breaches.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) revealed on 14 August that it had commenced proceedings in the Federal Court against Tuan Nguyen, the former director of Artorios Ink, a telemarketing company that sold printer cartridges.
In 2013, the court found that Nguyen was knowingly concerned in false or misleading representations made by Artorios Ink to five small businesses to sell printer cartridges.
The court ordered Mr Nguyen to pay a penalty of $50,000 but, according to the ACCC, he made no payments and filed for bankruptcy.
Nguyen has now been discharged from bankruptcy. In response, the ACCC is now seeking a garnishee order requiring Nguyen’s employer to withhold part of his wages in order to pay the penalty previously ordered.
“Individuals who have contravened the Australian Consumer Law cannot escape paying Court ordered penalties by filing for bankruptcy. As in this case, the ACCC may take action after they are discharged from bankruptcy,” ACCC deputy chair, Dr Michael Schaper, said.
“If businesses and individuals do not pay penalties ordered by the Court in ACCC proceedings, the ACCC will take action where appropriate to enforce payment of those penalties,” he said.
In 2013, both the director, (Tuan) Nguyen, and sales manager, Thuan Nguyen, of Artorios Ink were fined a cumulative total of $100,000 – or $50,000 each – after being found to have engaged in misleading or deceptive conduct with small businesses.
The court also made declarations at the time that the two individuals would not manage or be a director of a corporation for five years.
Tuan Nguyen and Thuan Nguyen admitted to acting deliberately to mislead and deceive small businesses to generate ink cartridge sales.
Artorios Ink sold printer cartridges to businesses from 2008 to 2012 and went into voluntary liquidation in February after the ACCC instituted proceedings against it in September 2012.