According to media reports, an EU judge said that for search engine giant Google, the 2.4 billion euros ($2.6 billion) in antitrust fines were “a small sum of money”. The EU judge said it could increase Google’s fines, which Google is seeking to reverse.
EU judge believes $2.6 billion is a “small change” for Google
On the third day of a hearing at the EU’s General Court, a judge from Ireland, Colm Mac Eochaidh, continued to question Google’s defense lawyers, saying the court has the power to increase Google’s fine from $2.6 billion.
Eochaidh asked Google’s defense lawyer: “Did such a high fine prevent you from repeating this behavior?” He said that the fine did not make much sense to Google because it was “only a small amount of money in your hands, so in fact, it is not very important. “
At this hearing, Google did not anticipate that it might face higher fines when protesting the results of the EU’s 2017 antitrust investigation. At the hearing, Google said that the EU regulators had done too much and made major mistakes. This is the first of three appeals Google has filed against the EU’s antitrust ruling, and if the EU loses, it may have to suspend strict law enforcement against large technology companies.
Google’s defense attorney, Christopher Thomas, believes that the fine is unlikely to increase because the EU antitrust agency did not ask for an increase in the amount of the penalty. Eochaidh immediately dismissed him, saying that the EU’s “comprehensive court” has “unlimited jurisdiction” to increase the amount of punishment, although the issue is not in consideration for now.
On Friday, Eochaidh urged Google’s defense lawyers to imagine if he had 120 euros in his pocket but was fined 2.4 euros for littering. The judge asked: “Do you feel heartache for this 2.4 euro?”. In this amount really a “small change” for Google?