Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s France offices were raided by antitrust investigators, according to local news reports. Slash Gear’s Chris Davies reports that allegations have been made that the company discriminates against outside retailers because its own stores offer better prices than them.
Details On The Raid Of Apple France
The raid was said to last about 24 hours, and investigators reportedly confiscated a number of documents from the company. Allegations of unfair business practices were first levied against Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) in France last year when the well-known French retailer eBizcuss went bankrupt.
The Allegations Against Apple
The retailer reportedly accused the tech giant of abusing its dominance, unfair competition and abusing economic dependence. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has also been accused of favoring its own stores in terms of distribution of new items, essentially leaving other retailers and distributors of its good at a disadvantage. eBizcuss had said that it often had to wait for new Apple products like the latest iPhone or Mac computer, although the new products were available at the Apple Store.
Other allegations involved the discounting of prices, which eBizcuss said was very restrictive. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is known for offering only the least amount of price cuts in comparison with other price cuts that are often offered by other companies in the tech industry.
Apple’s Other Problems In France
At this point French authorities have not made an official statement on the investigation, other than to confirm that it is happening. But this is just the latest problem Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has faced with French authorities.
Last month French officials ordered Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) to pay $6.5 million in taxes. The tax liability was from unpaid royalties on iPad sales in 2011. The tax is paid to the SACEM, a French society of authors, composers and music publishers which then distributes it to the content creators or owners. Apple reportedly collected this tax from consumers in France but failed to pay it to SACEM.
Earlier this year it was also revealed that the iPad and the iPhone could be subject to a culture tax in France. The tax would fund new cultural projects in France and would possibly be levied on all devices that are Internet-compatible.