FORTUNE -- Bill Baer, head of the DOJ's antitrust division, spoke at some length Thursday night about the e-book case that "put a stop" in his words, "to Apple's anticompetitive conduct."
But before he got to Apple (AAPL), Baer rattled off a list of his division's accomplishments in the five years since President Obama a took office. Among them:
In all, Baer boasted, his division in five years had filed 339 criminal cases, charged 109 corporations with criminal antitrust violations and charged 311 individuals with antitrust crimes.
Finally, he got to U.S.A. v. Apple -- a civil, mind you, not a criminal case -- which he offered as an example of how his division helps protect the "bottom line of American families" who have "struggled to make ends meet."
"Consider the serious and documented economic harm," he said, "caused by the e-books conspiracy recently orchestrated by Apple Inc. and certain book publishers. On July 10, 2013, Judge Cote issued a 160 page opinion finding that Apple had violated Section 1 of the Sherman Act by conspiring with publishers to raise e- books prices and to end e-books retailers' freedom to compete on price. Judge Cote found that the conspiracy was effective: the publishers' e-books prices increased across the board once the illegal agreements were in place. Overnight, the price of the defendants' bestselling e-books rose from $9.99 to $12.99 or $14.99...
"The evidence of consumers benefiting from post-injunction price competition is equally compelling. Current pricing data shows that since injunctions against Apple and its book publisher co-conspirators were entered, the average price of the top 25 best-selling e-books dropped from around $11 to around $6."
You could plausibly argue -- as the book publishers do -- that the DOJ gave comfort not to struggling American families, but to Amazon (AMZN). And that in the process it kicked an industry in the throes of disruption while it was down.
Baer did not mention Thursday night that Apple still vigorously denies the charges, has filed notice of appeal, and is fighting him at every turn. But he did make a plug for compliance monitors -- like Michael Bromwich, the one assigned to the Apple case -- in advance of a hearing on Apple's motion to have Bromwich removed. (See Never get between an Apple antitrust monitor and his per diem.)
The hearing is scheduled for Tuesday in a Federal courthouse in New York City. We plan to be there.
Judging from Judge Cote's past performance, the odds are in Amazon's favor.
FORTUNE -- In another context -- or another courthouse -- the remedies the Justice Department and 33 states proposed Friday to address what they call Apple's (AAPL) "illegal conduct" in the e-book market might seem like an unreasonable intrusion by a government agency into a private company's business practices.
Among other things, the DOJ is demanding that Apple let Amazon MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Aug 2, 2013 1:05 PM ET
The outlines of each side's case were clearly laid in Monday's opening arguments.
FORTUNE -- The first rule of law, goes the old lawyers joke, is that if the facts are against you, you argue the law. The second rule is that if the law is against you, you argue the facts.
Based on each side's opening arguments on the first day of U.S.A. v. Apple, it's clear that the Department of MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Jun 4, 2013 8:06 AM ET
It doesn't start until June 3, but the judge is already working on a draft of her decision.
FORTUNE -- This does not bode well for Cupertino.
Asked during a preliminary hearing Thursday to share her thoughts about the Department of Justice's case against Apple (AAPL) in the long-awaited e-book antitrust trial, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote said this, according to Reuters:
"I believe that the government will be able to show at trial MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 24, 2013 8:05 AM ET
In the DOJ's great e-book conspiracy, Apple is the sole defendant still standing.
FORTUNE -- The conspiracy case that the U.S. Department of Justice filed against Apple and five book publishers in April 2011 is finally coming to a head.
In the year that has passed, all five publishers have settled. Only Apple had the stomach -- or the wherewithal -- to take the case to trial.
It's scheduled to begin in a MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - May 15, 2013 3:51 PM ET
More heavy-handed behavior from the book world's 500-pound gorilla
FORTUNE -- Publishers who have had to deal with Amazon's (AMZN) arrogant reps know first hand the contempt with which they hold folks in the business of printing books on paper.
Now that the company is in the media's spotlight following the Justice Department's ass-backwards antitrust suit, the rest of us are getting a taste for how the book world's 500-pound gorilla operates.
The MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 30, 2012 12:44 PM ET
Why would a stock like Apple fall 10% just before quarterly earnings are due?
MONDAY 4:00 p.m. UPDATE: Throw another -4.15% on the barbie. One analyst called today's selloff "panic profit taking."
- - -
I think it may be time once again to dust off Jason Schwarz' classic blog post: Apple: Seven Reasons Shorts Love It.
Apple's (AAPL) shares, in case you missed it, took a drubbing last week, falling $38.77 (6%) in MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 16, 2012 7:40 AM ET
Cupertino breaks its silence, laying out its legal defense in four sentences
The company's response to US v. Apple Inc. et al., when it came Thursday evening, was as succinct and carefully crafted as any Apple (AAPL) marketing slogan.
What the Department of Justice characterized as a "per se violation" of the Sherman Antitrust Act, Apple is going to paint as an act of liberation.
We got our copy the company's four-sentence response to MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 13, 2012 6:13 AM ET
The settlement the Justice Department is seeking could shutter the iBookstore
Reuters and Bloomberg have both reported -- citing a pair of unnamed sources -- that Apple (AAPL) and one or two major publishers are preparing to get sued for antitrust violations, perhaps as early as today.
Three of the five publishers accused of colluding with Apple to fix the prices of e-books have reportedly accepted deals offered by the European Commission and MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Apr 11, 2012 7:12 AM ET
With partners, developers, competitors and maybe some regulatory agencies
One of Apple's (AAPL) weaknesses as a company -- as even Steve Jobs will admit -- is that it isn't a particularly good neighbor. Like its co-founder and CEO, it can be secretive, prickly and quick to take offense. Witness, for example, the 121 pending lawsuits that list Apple as a plaintiff or defendant.
So it's unusual and sort of refreshing to see MOREPhilip Elmer-DeWitt - Sep 19, 2010 8:27 AM ET
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