Apple could be told to cough up over $840 million following a damages claim for conspiring with publishing companies to increase the price of ebooks.

Attorney Steve Berman is leading the lawsuit on behalf of ebooks customers from across 33 states. Last summer the US Justice Department carried out a successful antitrust lawsuit against the tech giant. It is from that trial that Berman has taken his evidence.

iBooks

During last year’s trial, one Apple witness said that Apple had a deal with publishers to use an “agency model” for setting ebook prices. Apparently under the agreement, publishers set the final price that Apple had to charge customers and then Apple would take 30 percent of every sale. This meant that the average price of an ebook went from $9.99 to $12.99, that’s an increase of 14.9% in sales.

Berman points out that due to this price fixing, Apple owes American ebooks customers a bare minimum of $231 million in damages, and probably far more money than that. He thinks that Apple should be forced to pay triple this amount so that it can be divided between all those suing Apple.

So far Apple has not commented on this latest filing.

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SOURCE: http://www.theverge.com/2014/2/1/5368098/apple-hit-with-840-million-damages-claim-in-ebooks-lawsuit