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Apple exec embroiled in bribery scandal

Apple exec embroiled in bribery scandal

A senior Apple employee has become embroiled in legal action, amid claims he took bribes from Asian firms to supply them with valuable corporate information.

Paul Devine was involved in the sourcing of the hardware that goes into the iPhone and other key devices produced by the Californian firm and is now facing charges of wire fraud and the laundering of funds.

Key to his alleged misdemeanours is the suggestion that he communicated the targets that Apple had set for internal pricing, which would allow its suppliers to negotiate the best deal from the firm when it came to haggling over contracts.

Mr Devine accumulated almost £320,000 in bribes and deposited this in bank accounts which he opened under his wife's name to avoid suspicion, according to court documents.

"Apple is committed to the highest ethical standards in the way we do business. We have zero tolerance for dishonest behaviour inside or outside the company," said Apple in a statement.

Asia-based Andrew Ang, who brokered deals between Mr Devine and the Asian suppliers, is also implicated in the scandal.

Mr Devine was apparently found out in April 2010 after emails documenting his exploits were discovered, with the content requesting that a sum of money was to be sent to his accounts in order to reduce the chance of his being caught.

According to Apple's suit, he went as far as to lay out a basic contract for potential clients who could see what information he could provide and the payment required in return.

A number of firms are involved in the action, with major market players such as Asustek implicated through their subsidiaries.

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