Former Apple employee Paul Devine has pleaded guilty to taking kickbacks from Asian iPhone accessory makers.
According to a statement released by the US Department of Justice, Devine, who was a global supply manager with Apple, provided the suppliers with confidential company information such as sales forecasts, unreleased product information and price targets.
They also said that Devine had also conducted wire fraud, conspiracy and money laundering in order to conceal the location and source of money he was getting as kickbacks. Devine's kickback packages also included a small percentage of revenue the suppliers generated in doing business with Apple.
Devine, who also faces a lawsuit from Apple, admitted that losses incurred by Apple for his practices amounted to $2.4 million. As a part of his plea bargain, Devine has agreed to forfeit money and property worth $2.28 million. According to court documents, Apple's lawsuit has been stayed until the court announces its judgement.
Although Devine faces potentially up to 70 years in prison for his crimes, Judge James Ware in San Jose, California will announce the sentence on June 6th 2011 after consulting the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.
Devine's lawyer argues that his client is a good man who made a mistake and is trying to make 'amends'.