The federal judge presiding over the e-book antitrust lawsuit filed by the United States government against Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) issued a ruling on Wednesday obliging the tech giant’s chief executive office, Tim Cook to testify in court, according to report from Reuters.
Judge Denise Cote of the U.S. Southern District Court of New York approved the request of the Department of Justice (DOJ) to compel Cook to testify for four hours in connection with the allegations that Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) fixed the pricing in the e-book market. The Justice Department claimed that the iPhone and iPad Maker colluded with five publishers to increase the prices of e-books.
The Justice Department argued that it is probable that Cook would provide relevant information regarding Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s entry in the e-book market. The agency believe that it is possible that Cook had a conversation with the late Apple founder and CEO Steve Jobs regarding the company’s e-book business.
The report cited that the tech giant contended the Justice Department request for Cooks Testimony. The tech giant argued that Cook’s testimony will just be “cumulative and duplicative” since the government already heard the testimony of 11 other executives from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL).
According to Judge Cote, the main reason of his order for Cook’s deposition was the death of Jobs. She said, “Because of that loss, I think the government is entitled to take testimony from high-level executives within Apple about topics relevant to the government case,” as well as to counter Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) defense arguments.”
Other defendants including all the publishers, Pearson Plc’s Penguin Group, News Corp’s HarperCollins Publishers Inc and CBS Corp-owned Simon & Schuster Inc, and Macmillan agreed to settle the lawsuit of the DOJ. The only remaining defendant fight the case is Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL).
The Justice Department’s main objective is to prove that the iPhone and iPad maker violated antitrust regulations and to obtain a court order that would block the company from engaging in the same practices. The agency is not seeking for damages in the case. The court schedule a trial in June.