Troisdorf · Customs officers, the public order office and the police conducted a raid at the Amazon distribution center in Troisdorf on Thursday. In addition to two illegal employees, they also found delivery trucks that had tires without tread.
Customs officers, the public order office and police discovered two illegal workers during a raid at the online retailer Amazon in Troisdorf on Thursday. One delivery truck had completely worn down tires and was immediately taken out of circulation, according to a customs spokesman after the inspection. There were also indications of payment below minimum wage in several instances, he added. These cases will be be further investigated.
131 drivers were questioned and numerous contracts with Amazon subcontractors were checked, the spokesman said. Amazon's own employees were not questioned, it was only about delivery drivers from subcontractor companies.
Two young drivers who had delivered packages without a work permit are under investigation; but it is the companies which illegally employed them that are the main focus, the customs spokesman added. "This is not a minor offense, these people are neither insured nor are they paid fairly." He added that the law in this case provides for fines in the five-digit range and even imprisonment in repeat cases. The customs spokesman praised Amazon as being very cooperative.
The online retailer assured the authorities of its full support during such inspections. It expects its subcontractors to comply with legal requirements, a company spokesman said. This applies in particular to wages, social security contributions and working hours, he said. Amazon has set up a driver’s hotline in Germany in several languages - delivery people can use this hotline to report grievances anonymously. The "Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger" had previously reported on the inspection.
In previous inspections, customs and police had also repeatedly come across violations such as undercutting the minimum wage, working without social security and significant defects in the delivery trucks. During a check at the end of March last year at Amazon in Cologne, there were 24 indications of violations among a good 50 drivers questioned. A delivery truck was found to be so dilapidated during an inspection a year ago that it had to be towed away, as customs officers reported.
Orig. text: dpa