The Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) said it’s has decided to recommend the local unit of Apple and one of its executives for prosecution for allegedly impeding the regulator’s probe into unfair business practices, reports The Korea Herald.
South Korea’s antitrust regulator added that it plans to fine Apple Korea 300 million won (about $265,000) for hampering its investigation. The KFTC has been investigating the tech giant for anti-competitive behavior.
Apple Korea has been criticized by local mobile carriers for passing the costs for smartphone sales — including advertising costs, launch events and repair costs — to them.
The Korea Herald says that Apple purportedly blocked Internet access and did not restore it in an attempt to impede the KFTC’s on-site investigation in June 2016 into the company’s unfair business activities, according to the KFTC. The article adds that the tech giant refused to submit documents on network disruption to the antitrust regulator, and one of its executives physically attempted to deter an investor’s related probe in November 2017.
Apple denies all this.
“We have fully cooperated with KFTC, and neither Apple nor any of our employees did anything wrong,” Apple said in a statement. “We follow the law wherever we operate and strongly disagree with KFTC in this case. We look forward to sharing the facts with the authorities.”