This multistate lawsuit against three of the nation's largest book publishers – Penguin, Simon & Schuster, and Macmillan – and Apple Inc., alleges they colluded to fix the sales prices of electronic books (e-books). The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Austin, Texas, cites the defendants for violating the States' antitrust laws and the federal Sherman Antitrust Act.
Following a three week trial which concluded on June 20th, Judge Denise Cote of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York issued an Order today finding that Apple conspired to restrain trade in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman Act and relevant state statutes to the extent those laws are congruent with Section 1, Attorney General Bob Cooper announced today.
After a two-year investigation, Tennessee along with the U.S. Department of Justice and 32 other states and U.S. territories filed suit in federal court. They alleged a conspiracy existed among Apple and five major publishers to increase retail E-book prices for all consumers and to eliminate E-book retail price competition between E-book outlets regardless of where the consumers bought their E-books.
Tennessee and the other plaintiffs settled with the five publishers prior to trial but Apple chose to challenge the allegations at trial. "This ruling should send a message to anyone who attempts to gouge consumers in the future by artificially inflating prices for goods and services," Attorney General Cooper said. "As a result of this activity, consumers paid millions more than they should have in a naturally competitive marketplace."
This list includes only significant filings and is not intended to be a complete record of the matter.