The European Commission has conducted raids on a number of unnamed lead recycling companies in several European Union countries as part of an investigation into "suspected cartel practices”.
According to Reuters, the September 26, 2012 raids involved companies the European Commission said had been buying old batteries and scrap lead for recycling.
The companies’ countries were also unnamed.
"The Commission has reasons to believe that the companies concerned may have violated Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), which prohibits cartels and restrictive business practices," the European Commission announced.
The European Commission’s executive arm said the unannounced inspections were a preliminary step in its investigation and did not mean the companies were guilty of anti-competitive behavior.