This week, the United States Department of Justice stepped up allegations that Apple engaged in a horizontal price-fixing scheme with regard to eBook prices. The tech giant, new documents filed by the DOJ reveal, conspired with huge publishers in violation of antitrust laws “to strip retailers of pricing authority.”
The department’s Antitrust Division filed papers for a trial set to begin June 3 in federal court in Manhattan that included excerpts of e-mails and depositions of Apple executives including the company’s late founder, Steve Jobs, and Senior Vice President Eddy Cue and publishing executives.
The U.S. first brought suit against Apple and leading industry publishers in 2012.
“Apple did not conspire to fix eBook pricing,” Tom Neumayr, a spokesman for Apple, said today. “We helped transform the eBook market with the introduction of the iBookstore in 2010 bringing consumers an expanded selection of eBooks and delivering innovative new features. The market has been thriving and innovating since Apple’s entry and we look forward to going to trial to defend ourselves.”