When Google’s director gave an inconsistent testimony against Apple in ebook price fixing lawsuit last week, the Cupertino company appeared to have got the upper hand but today, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has produced another Steve Jobs email sent to Eddy Cue, that puts Apple back on the defensive. According to Fortune’s report, the email casts a doubt on Apple’s claims that it was “indifferent” to the arrangements publishers had with other retailers.
Reporters in the courtroom were surprised when the DOJ’s McCuaig introduced Plaintiff’s Exhibit 55, an e-mail from Steve Jobs to Eddy Cue, his point man in the e-book negotiations, responding to a request from the publishers that the price caps in the contract be raised.
Does that, McCuaig asked Apple’s Moerer, reflect “indifference”?
“No,” Moerer reluctantly admitted.
The admission was particularly painful because U.S. District Judge Denise Cote — who will decide the non-jury case — seemed to be coming around to Apple’s point of view.
Orin Snyder, Apple’s chief counsel, wasted no time trying to disarm the new evidence.
“Are you aware,” he asked Moerer, “that the e-mail was never sent?”
The government immediately objected, and Judge Cote ordered the question stricken from the record.
We’ll find out more when Eddy Cue takes the stand in the court tomorrow.