Three of Apple’s top executives have failed to dodge subpoenas, forcing them to testify in the upcoming Justice Department trial alleging Google abused its search engine strength.
US District Judge Amit Mehta was not swayed by the Apple executives – Eduardo Cue, John Giannandrea and Adrian Perica – who argued that compelling them to testify again would be excessively cumbersome and duplicative of previous questioning.
John Schmidtlein, a representative for Google, condemned the allegation, saying in a statement, “Offering a superior product, winning business on the merits is never unlawful.” Judge Mehta’s brief order on Monday dismissed Apple’s appeal and the trial will now proceed as planned.
The Justice Department has cited Apple as “chief among Google’s distribution partners,” and essential to its case due to an “information-services agreement” between the two companies.
The government is alleging that Google shared billions of dollars in annual advertising revenue with a select few business associates, including Apple, in exchange for Google being set as the default search on designated devices.
Apple lawyers have warned Judge Mehta of the risks of unintentionally disclosing their most competitively sensitive information during trial.
Apple Corp. also contested the “overbroad” demands in the case, claiming they had already provided over 125,000 documents from senior executives.
The bench trial will begin on September 12 in the District Court of Washington D.C. and it will be interesting to see how Apple’s top brass performs in a live setting.