At least two Asian suppliers have admitted to working with an Apple midlevel manager who allegedly accepted more than $1 million in kickbacks in exchange for insider information about Apple's plans.
Paul Shin Devine yesterday pleaded not guilty to accusations that he accepted monetary compensation in exchange for providing suppliers of iPod and iPhone accessories with inside information about Apple's plans for future products.
Pegatron, the parent company of Kaeder Electronics, one of the suppliers in question, yesterday said it was looking into the matter.
"We are investigating the case now and feel sorry about this," said spokesperson said in a statement to Reuters.
Cresyn, the company that supplies Apple with ear phones for its devices, admitted to working with Devine but said they were paying him as a consultant. An anonymous official said the company entered into a contract with Mr. Devine in 2007.
"Devine approached us first and offered to give us business consulting to help advance into the U.S. market," a Cresyn official told Reuters.
"We accepted his offer and received general information about U.S. markets, and in return we offered him a small consulting fee. But this was based on a legal contract we made with him in 2007," said the rep.
Devine was yesterday indicted for 23 counts of wire fraud, money laundering, conspiracy and accepting kickbacks. Also named in court documents is Devine's Singapore-based accomplice, Andrew Ang.