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Antitrust Law

NY AG Claims Intel Used ‘Bribery and Coercion,’ Violated Antitrust Laws

Posted Nov 4, 2009 11:29 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has filed an antitrust lawsuit against Intel that alleges the company paid kickbacks disguised as rebates to keep computer companies from using competitors’ chips.

Cuomo maintains the rebates were accompanied by threats, according to stories in the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.).

“Rather than compete fairly, Intel used bribery and coercion to maintain a stranglehold on the market,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Intel’s actions not only unfairly restricted potential competitors, but also hurt average consumers who were robbed of better products and lower prices.”

In May, the European Commission fined Intel a record $1.45 billion for using anti-competitive practices to keep competitor Advanced Micro Devices out of the market for computer chips.

The New York attorney general’s suit is the first formal antitrust action against Intel by any government agency in the United States in more than a decade, the Times says. The Federal Trade Commission is also investigating Intel.

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