Tech

Google settles pharmacy ad probe for $500 million

Tina Nguyen Contributor

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Google Inc. has agreed to pay $500 million to settle a U.S. government investigation into the Internet search leader’s distribution of online ads from Canadian pharmacies illegally selling prescription and non-prescription drugs to American consumers, a U.S. attorney in Rhode Island said Wednesday.

The settlement means the Internet search leader will not face criminal prosecution for accusations that it improperly profited from ads promoting Canadian pharmacies that illegally imported drugs into the United States, U.S. Attorney Peter F. Neronha said.

The $500 million represents the gross revenues Google collected in ad buys from the Canadian pharmacies, plus the earnings generated from the illegal sales of drugs to American consumers, federal investigators said.

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