| NEW YORK, April 15
NEW YORK, April 15 Apple Inc on Tuesday
lost an attempt to dismiss lawsuits by state attorneys general
accusing it of conspiring with five major publishers to fix
U.S. District Judge Denise Cote's ruling paves the way for
attorneys general in 33 states and territories to move forward,
along with attorneys for consumers, in pursuing hundreds of
millions of dollars in damages at a July 14 trial.
Following a non-jury trial, Cote in July found that Apple
from 2009 to 2010 conspired with the publishers to raise e-book
prices and impede competitors such as Amazon.com Inc.
The states had pursued the liability finding alongside the
U.S. Justice Department without any objection by Apple and
obtained a subsequent injunction against the iPad maker in
September that called for the appointment of a compliance
But as the case moved into a damages phase, Apple argued
that the states lacked standing to maintain an action for
damages, arguing they had not alleged they had suffered any
Cote, though, said it was easy to conclude the states had
standing to move forward with the case.
"Apple has cited no authority to support the distinction it
is advocating here between the standing to seek an end to an
antitrust violation and the standing to seek damages for that
violation," she wrote.
The states' case is being led by attorneys general in Texas
and Connecticut. Jaclyn Falkowski, a spokeswoman for Connecticut
Attorney General George Jepsen, said in an email that the office
was pleased with the decision.
A spokesman for Apple did not immediately respond to a
request for comment. The company has appealed the liability
finding in the civil lawsuit and denies
Attorneys for the plaintiffs are seeking $840 million in
The publishers previously agreed to pay more than $166
million to settle related antitrust charges.
They included Lagardere SCA's Hachette Book Group
Inc, News Corp's HarperCollins Publishers LLC, Penguin
Group (USA) Inc, CBS Corp's Simon & Schuster Inc and
Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holtzbrinck GmbH's Macmillan.
The case is In Re: Electronic Books Antitrust Litigation,
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, No.
(Reporting by Nate Raymond in New York; Editing by Jonathan