HomeNewsBusiness NewsGoogle sanctioned for intentionally destroying evidence in antitrust case

    Google sanctioned for intentionally destroying evidence in antitrust case

    Published on

    Powered by unsplash

    A federal judge on Tuesday ordered Google to pay sanctions and face a possible penalty at trial for intentionally destroying employee chat messages that could have been used as evidence in a sweeping antitrust litigation against the internet giant.

    The ruling by U.S. District Judge James Donato in San Francisco came after an evidentiary hearing that featured witness testimony and other evidence. He said that Google “fell strikingly short” in its duties to preserve records and that it “intended to subvert the discovery process” by deleting chats that were relevant to the case.

    The litigation involves a consumer class action with as many as 21 million residents; 38 states and the District of Columbia; and companies including Epic Games Inc and Match Group LLC. They accuse Google of illegally monopolizing the Android app distribution market by engaging in exclusionary conduct that harmed them in various ways, allegations that Google has denied.

    The plaintiffs are seeking aggregate damages of $4.7 billion. The trial is scheduled to begin in November.

    Donato said he would allow the plaintiffs to seek an instruction to the jury that Google destroyed unfavorable information. He also asked the plaintiffs’ lawyers to provide an amount in legal fees they are seeking as a sanction by April 21.

    “Google has tried to downplay the problem and displayed a dismissive attitude ill tuned to the gravity of its conduct,” Donato wrote.

    A Google spokesperson said the company has “produced over three million documents, including thousands of chats.” In a court filing last year, Google’s lawyers said the company took “robust steps to preserve relevant chats.”

    But Donato said that Google “left employees largely on their own to determine what Chat communications might be relevant” to the litigation and that some employees preferred to keep chat history off even when they were on legal hold.

    He cited newly produced chats that showed Google employees discussing topics such as revenue share agreements, mobile application distribution agreements, and payment policies that were at the core of the litigation.

    Google is also facing similar claims of destroying chat records in a separate antitrust case brought by the U.S. Justice Department in Washington, D.C., federal court. That case focuses on Google’s search business.

    Powered by unsplash

    See More:

    Judge finds Google destroyed evidence and repeatedly gave false info to court

    A federal judge yesterday ruled that Google intentionally destroyed evidence and must be sanctioned, rejecting the company’s argument…

    US court sanctions Google for deleting evidence in antitrust cases

    Alphabet Inc’s (GOOGL.O) Google LLC intentionally destroyed employee “chat” evidence in antitrust litigation in California

    Google again accused of willfully destroying evidence in Android antitrust battle

    Google Chat histories handed over by the web giant in ongoing Android antitrust litigation reveal the biz has been systematically destroying evidence..

    Leave a Reply

    Latest articles

    How the Heritage Foundation is preparing for a second Trump presidency

    The Heritage Foundation, a powerful conservative think tank based in Washington, has been ramping...

    U.S. Navy thwarts Iranian attempts to seize oil tankers in Gulf of Oman

    The U.S. Navy has intervened to stop Iranian Navy ships from seizing two oil...

    Melatonin Use in Children: A Growing Trend with Risks and Alternatives

    Melatonin, a hormone that helps regulate the sleep-wake cycle, is widely used by parents...

    Trainwreck: Woodstock ’99 – How a festival of peace and love turned into a disaster of violence and misogyny

    The Woodstock '69 festival is widely regarded as one of the most iconic and...

    More like this

    Popular Science Goes Digital: How a 151-Year-Old Publication Adapts to the Changing Media Landscape

    Popular Science, one of the oldest and most respected science and technology magazines in...

    Melatonin Use in Children: A Growing Trend with Risks and Alternatives

    Melatonin, a hormone that helps regulate the sleep-wake cycle, is widely used by parents...

    Saudi Arabia’s oil gamble: How the kingdom is trying to boost demand and avoid a bust

    Saudi Arabia, the world's top oil exporter, is reportedly planning to artificially boost oil...
    %d bloggers like this: