| NEW YORK
NEW YORK Jan 7 Apple Inc is seeking
the removal of a lawyer appointed by a court to monitor its
antitrust compliance following a ruling last year that the
company had conspired to fix e-book prices.
An attorney for the consumer technology giant on Tuesday
asked U.S. District Judge Denise Cote in Manhattan to disqualify
Michael Bromwich from serving as an external compliance monitor,
arguing he had shown a personal bias against the company.
In a letter to Cote, Apple's lawyer cited a "wholly
inappropriate declaration" filed by Bromwich last month.
In the declaration, Bromwich defended his work as a monitor
against Apple's complaint that he had overstepped his mandate.
He also detailed his unsuccessful efforts to gain Apple's
cooperation for his assignment.
Cote appointed Bromwich in October following a ruling she
made in July finding Apple liable for conspiring with five
publishers to raise e-book prices above those established by the
dominant retailer in the market, Amazon.com Inc.
But the relationship between Apple and Bromwich quickly
In November, Apple complained Bromwich had aggressively
sought to interview top executives, even though his mandate
called for him to assess the company's antitrust policies 90
days after his appointment.
Apple also cited Bromwich's proposed hourly payment rate of
$1,100. Those fees, Apple argued, provided Bromwich incentive to
run "as broad and intrusive investigation as possible."
In the letter on Tuesday, Apple's lawyer repeated those same
A spokeswoman for Bromwich declined to comment.
The case is U.S. v Apple Inc et al, U.S. District Court,
Southern District of New York, 12-2826.