Apple Loses Bid for E-Book Damages Trial Delay

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in New York has rejected Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) request to delay an upcoming e-books trial in which multiple state attorneys general and consumers are seeking damages from the Cupertino-based company over its role in a price-fixing conspiracy, reports Reuters. According to the appeals court’s ruling, Apple can proceed with its appeal of the original verdict separately while the damages trial goes forward as scheduled. Apple had secured a temporary reprieve last month in order to make its arguments for a stay of the upcoming damages trial.

The plaintiffs — who were previously granted class certification to sue as a group by U.S. District Judge Denise Cote — are eligible for up to $840 million in damages under antitrust laws. However, the final damages award amount will be determined by Judge Cote at a trial that is scheduled for July 14.

As noted by Reuters, the states’ case is being spearheaded by Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott. “We are pleased with the decision and continue to prepare for the upcoming damages trial,” said a spokesperson for Jepsen, according to Reuters.

Last year, Judge Cote ruled that Apple violated antitrust laws when it orchestrated a price-fixing conspiracy with CBS’ (NYSE:CBS) Simon & Schuster; Lagardere SCA’s Hachette Book Group, Inc.; News Corp.’s (NASDAQ:NWS) (NASDAQ:NWSA) HarperCollins; Pearson Plc’s (NYSE:PSO) Penguin Group; and Holtzbrinck Publishers, LLC (doing business as Macmillan.) As noted by Reuters, all five of the publishers have already agreed to a settlement that included paying over $166 million on behalf of consumers.