Apple Kickback Scandal: Manager Accused of Taking More than $1M
CHICAGO Aug 14 (Reuters) - A manager at technology company Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) has been indicted by a federal grand jury in California on charges including taking kickbacks, wire fraud and money laundering, according to court documents.
Paul Shin Devine, a global supply manager at Apple, is accused of accepting more than $1 million in kickbacks from half a dozen Asian suppliers of iPhone and iPod accessories, the San Jose Mercury News reported. Devine appeared in court on Friday, according to court documents.
Cupertino, California-based Apple also filed a civil suit against Devine and claimed he received more than $1 million in payments, kickbacks and bribes over several years, the newspaper reported.
Devine was charged in the indictment with 23 counts of wire fraud, money laundering, conspiracy and kickbacks by a federal grand jury on Wednesday, court documents showed. He is scheduled to return to court on Monday to have a lawyer appointed for him, according to the documents.
"Apple is committed to the highest ethical standards in the way we do business," Apple spokesman Steve Dowling said in a statement, according to the newspaper. "We have zero tolerance for dishonest behavior inside or outside the company."
Devine allegedly used his position at Apple to obtain confidential information that he shared with Apple suppliers to help them negotiate favorable contracts with Apple, the Mercury News reported.
In return, the suppliers paid Devine kickbacks, which he allegedly shared with Andrew Ang of Singapore, the newspaper reported. Ang was charged with three counts of wire fraud and conspiracy, according to the court documents.
The investigation was conducted jointly by the FBI and Internal Revenue Service.
Apple and federal officials were not immediately available to comment on Saturday.
(Reporting by Lisa Shumaker; additional reporting by Jeremy Pelofsky in Washington; Editing by Will Dunham)