Apple violated antitrust laws when it orchestrated a conspiracy to fix e-book prices with five major publishers, Southern District Judge Denise Cote (See Profile) ruled Wednesday.

Following a June bench trial in which Cote heard testimony about a quickly assembled plan by Apple to plunge into the e-book market by combining with publishers fed up with the $9.99 price charged by Amazon, the judge said in United States v. Apple, 12 Civ. 2826, that "the evidence is overwhelming that Apple knew of the unlawful aims of the conspiracy and joined the conspiracy with the specific intent to help it succeed."

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