The Seattle Times writes that "at least 10 Amazon employees took bribes to help third-party merchants boost sales on the company’s website, according to a federal indictment filed Friday.
The indictment charged six U.S.- and India-based consultants, working on behalf of third-party merchants who sold on Amazon’s Marketplace platform, with conspiracy and wire fraud. The consultants allegedly paid nearly $100,000 in bribes to Amazon employees, who in exchange reinstated merchants’ suspended accounts and products on Marketplace, facilitated attacks against competitors, gave away network access privileges, shared proprietary information and circumvented internal regulations to boost merchants’ sales."
It is no small deal: "All told, the U.S. attorney estimates the scheme took a monetary toll in excess of $100 million. Part of that sum represents the merchants’ proceeds from Marketplace sales between 2017 and the present, secured by bribes that brought them unfair competitive advantages. The rest comprises lost sales on the part of competitors, and costs to Amazon."
The story notes that none of the Amazon employees were charged, but could be in the future.
- KC's View:
I'm confused by this latter piece of information. Isn't it as much a crime to take a bribe as to give one?
And I certainly hope that these are former Amazon employees.