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Ex-Apple manager pleads guilty to kickback scheme

An ex Apple employee has pleaded guilty to a number of criminal counts after he was accused of taking kickbacks from Asian suppliers in exchange for the iPhone makers secrets.

According to Reuters, Paul Devine worked in the iPhone division as a global supply manager from 2005 until 2010, he was accused of using his position to pass on many of Apple’s secrets in the hope of helping some of the Asian suppliers negotiate better contracts with the company for monetary gain.

It was only when Apple launched an internal investigation in April last year that evidence started to mount against Devine. He was finally arrested in August 2010 when the company found a number of e-mails that had passed between Devine and the Asian suppliers on his Apple-owned laptop.

Yesterday Devine pleaded guilty to wire fraud, conspiracy and money laundering, he has also had to forfeit $2.28 million worth of property and money according to prosecutors. Devine admitted that he had been transferring the money he had been making from the crime between US and overseas banks as a means to hide the payments that had been made to him.

Devine is currently free on bail, but could now face a long 20-year jail term and a huge fine when he is sentenced on June 6.

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