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Former Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos testifies remotely to the House Antitrust Subcommittee in July 2020. Photo: Graeme Jennings-Pool/Getty Images

The House Antitrust Subcommittee, in a letter released Monday, questioned if Amazon misled or lied to Congress through testimony from the company's top executives — including former CEO Jeff Bezos — regarding its business practices.

Why it matters: Reuters published a report last week detailing how the e-commerce giant's India branch manufactured knockoffs of popular goods and manipulated search results to advertise its own items over the original product.

  • The House Antitrust Subcommittee said in a letter to Andy Jassy, Amazon's current CEO, that the report contradicts sworn testimony from the company's executives during its investigation into the corporation's business practices.
  • It is giving Amazon until Nov. 1 to correct the record or provide documents and other evidence to corroborate its prior testimony.

What they're saying: "At best, this reporting confirms that Amazon’s representatives misled the Committee," the subcommittee said in the letter to Jassy.

  • "At worst, it demonstrates that they may have lied to Congress in possible violation of federal criminal law," it added.
  • "We strongly encourage you to make use of this opportunity to correct the record and provide the Committee with sworn, truthful, and accurate responses to this request as we consider whether a referral of this matter to the Department of Justice for criminal investigation is appropriate."

The letter was signed by Reps. David Cicilline (D-R.I.), Ken Buck (R-Colo.), Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) and Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.).

The big picture: India is one of the company's largest markets, and for years Amazon has been accused of replicating popular goods to sell on its website.

  • Amazon denied the accusations, but Reuters' report was based on thousands of pages of internal documents from the company.
  • The antitrust subcommittee's request is just one front of Congress' attempt to regulate Amazon.
  • The company also faces bipartisan legislation that would significantly curtail the online sales of counterfeit and stolen goods and prevent it and other tech companies from favoring their own services.

Go deeper: Amazon's e-commerce bill bind

Go deeper

Retailers take another page from Amazon's playbook

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Amazon's competitors are multiplying. Traditional retailers are trying to replicate the e-commerce giant's playbook.

Driving the news: Macy’s is set to launch a third-party sellers marketplace next year, the company said today, becoming the latest legacy retailer to enter an arena dominated by Amazon.

Amazon deforestation in Brazil surges to worst in 15 years

General view of a burnt area of the Amazonia rainforest in the surroundings of the city of Porto Velho, Rondonia state, Brazil, on September 15, 2021. Photo: Mauro Pimentel/AFP via Getty Images

Deforestation in Brazil's Amazon rainforest reached a 15-year high after it soared 22% in one year, according to data published Thursday.

Why it matters: The Amazon is the world's largest tropical rainforest and stores vast quantities of CO2, the primary greenhouse gas.

7 mins ago - World

Biden to warn Putin U.S. will add troops in Eastern Europe if Russia invades Ukraine

Putin meets Biden in Geneva. Photo: Peter Klaunzer - Pool/Keystone via Getty

President Biden will warn Russian President Vladimir Putin when they speak on Tuesday that if Russia invades Ukraine, the U.S. is prepared to increase its troop presence, capabilities and military exercises on NATO's "eastern flank," a senior administration official told reporters.

Why it matters: The administration believes it's increasingly likely that Putin will order an invasion.