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Senators seek ‘severe’ penalties for violations of the antitrust laws

Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) is asking the U.S. Attorney General William Barr, as he testifies during a hearing on “the Department of Justice’s investigation of the Russian intervention, and with the 2016 presidential election,” on Capitol Hill in Washington, d.c., u.s., May 1, 2019 at the latest. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Richard Blumenthal introduced legislation on Friday to impose severe penalties for companies that breach the competition rules, following a Department of Justice investigation into alleged anti-competitive behaviour by the major tech.

The “Monopolization Deterrence Act” by Democratic senators, would authorize the Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission to seek civil penalties for monopolization offenses under the united states antitrust laws, Klobuchar’s office said in a statement.

The US anti-trust enforcers have been critical of the tech giants, Facebook Inc., Alphabet, Inc. Google, Amazon.com and with Apple Inc. to probe the accusations that they are taking in anti-competitive behaviour.

Klobuchar, who is seeking the Democratic nomination for president in 2020, he said in the letter of the law, it would allow the “serious financial implications” for the control of the United States’ “monopoly problem.”

Under the bill, the fines can be as high as 15% of the total sales in the united states of america.

Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, another Democratic presidential candidate, has put billboards up in tech-heavy Silicon Valley will have to make a call to “BREAK up the BIG TECHNOLOGY.”

It was not immediately clear whether the law has a counterpart in the House of Representatives.

Report by Bryan Pietsch; Editing by Susan Thomas

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