European Union regulators fined Google a hefty $1.7 billion Wednesday on the basis that the Silicon Valley giant violated various anti-trust laws, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.
Google engaged in “illegal practices” in a bid to “cement its dominant market position” in advertising markets, Margrethe Vestager, EU’s top competition commissioner, said in a press statement announcing the penalty. Additional criticisms and possible fine were still to come, she added.
Vestager has been a real headache for Google. She has now fined the tech giant more than $9 billion for antitrust violations. U.S. regulators have so far avoided slapping fines on Google, though President Donald Trump flirted with the idea in November 2018.
Google has already made “a wide range of changes to our products to address the [European] Commission’s concerns,” Kent Walker, the company’s senior vice president of global affairs, said in a statement. Google has not yet disclosed whether it will consider appealing the E.U.’s decision.
Trump, for his part, has long a long and sordid relationship with big tech, which he views as antithetical to conservative free expression. He told The Daily Caller in a 2018 interview that he believes Facebook and Google are interfering in the U.S. election on behalf of the Democratic Party.
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