Last September, six Amazon consultants, lawyers, and former employees were federally indicted on charges of, amongst other things, bribery. The first guilty plea was rendered on September 7 by Rohit Kadimisetty, a former Amazon employee in India who had moved to California. Prosecutors recommending that Kadimisetty be sentenced to up to five years in prison and pay a fine of up to $50,000.
With the guilty plea, some details emerged about how bribing Amazon employees worked. Prosecutors described that Kadimisetty accepted over $100,000 in bribes from others including Joe Nilsen and Ed Rosenberg. Amongst the bribes were $4000 from Amazon consultants/lawyers in America to get their clients approved into restricted product categories on Amazon, specifically topicals.
Prosecutors said “…on or about January 19, 2018, in response to a request from Rosenberg on behalf of a third party seller, Nilsen and Kunju (then employed at Amazon), copying Defendant, discussed the cost of obtaining approval of two restricted products (“2 topicals”). They ultimately agreed upon $4,000 each (“4k per approval”), which Nilsen conveyed to Rosenberg.”
Six people were charged in the indictment, including
- Rohit Kadimisetty, 27, Northridge, California
- Ephraim Rosenberg (Ed Rosenberg), 45, Brooklyn
- Joseph Nilsen (Joe Nilsen), 31, New York City, NY
- Nishad Kunju, 31 Hyderabad (India)
- Hadis Nuhanovic, 30, Acworth, Georgia
- Kristen Leccese, 32, New York City, NY
No other pleas or verdicts for the other defendants have been made.