Food delivery giants Uber and Menulog have denied allegations their platforms have been used by criminal gangs to deliver drugs.
A parliamentary committee has been looking into how crime gangs have adapted to COVID-19 lockdowns, finding drug deliveries have increased in popularity.
The parliamentary committee did not mention any particular companies within the industry and there is no suggestion UberEats, Menulog or Deliveroo were used for the purpose of drug dealing by organised crime gangs.
Brisbane Liberal MP Julian Simmonds told NCA NewsWire criminal gangs have been adaptive by using the food delivery industry.
“There’s a lot of app food delivery drivers coming to people’s doors, and it’s a largely unregulated industry at the moment,” Simmonds said.
“When organised criminal gangs see a lack of regulation they will see a way in and they will take advantage of it, and we saw them using that as a delivery mechanism when people were otherwise not able to move around.”
UberEats and Menulog have denied the allegations saying they operate with a high degree of caution and regularly monitor for illegal activity.
“Any illegal activity while using the Uber app is unacceptable and can result in the immediate loss of access to the Uber app,” an UberEats spokesperson told NCA NewsWire.
“Our dedicated law enforcement response team, which includes former Australian police officers, is on-hand to assist police in their investigation into any such matter.”
Uber said its law enforcement team was on call 24 hours per day to respond in real time to investigations.
Menulog also denied criminal groups were using its platform, telling NCA NewsWire law enforcement has never made that suggestion to it.
“All Menulog couriers must submit a police background check prior to commencing with Menulog,” a company spokesperson said.
It said the company “condemns such behaviour and would not tolerate it happening on its network”.
Gig economy workers are also being watched closely by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) as the end of financial year looms.