Judge Appoints Monitor for Apple’s Business Dealings

Apple has been provided an external monitor to review many of its business-related matters as a result of its e-book price fixing scandal. Michael Bromwich, an attorney who recently dealt with offshore drilling issues for the U.S., will be the person monitoring Apple and its deals with other companies.

U.S. District Judge Denise Cote is responsible for putting forth the external monitor requirement after her court took on the initial e-book pricing lawsuit. Bernard Nigro, head of the antitrust department at the New York law firm Fried Frank, was appointed to help the court find the best person for the job, since Apple is a large company to monitor.

The Monitor

Bromwich was one of two potential monitors proposed by the Justice Department. Since Bromwich's main focus as an attorney is internal investigations and monitoring, it makes sense that he ended up being the best person for the job.

This is not the first time that Bromwich has taken on massive jobs for the United States. He was appointed to monitor offshore drilling by President Obama in 2010. However, many people argue that Bromwich and his fellow monitors did not do a good job monitoring the drilling.

"I am deeply honored to have been selected by the court to serve as the monitor in this matter," said Bromwich, after the decision was announced Thursday. Cote has said Bromwich was "well qualified" to take on the task.

Price Fixing

The entire case comes as a result of Apple working with multiple e-book publishers to strike deals that not only hurt other retailers, but also forced buyers to pay more than necessary for titles purchased through Apple's iTunes store.

Cote ruled Apple guilty of price fixing in July, finding that Apple had worked with five different publishers to raise e-book prices and drive out the competition. The publishers were able...

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