China Warns Microsoft Not To Interfere With Anti-Trust Investigation

China's State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) issued a warning to Microsoft not to interfere with its anti-trust investigation of the software maker. The warning comes after China made a series of surprise visits to several Microsoft offices in China, including ones in Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Chengdu.

The SAIC announced it was formally investigating Microsoft last week over anti-trust concerns, and on Monday, Microsoft lawyer Deputy General Counsel Mary Snapp was at the regulator's offices being questioned, Reuters reports.

Microsoft Newspaper

"Microsoft promised to respect Chinese law and fully cooperate with the SAIC's investigation work," the SAIC said.

You Yunting, a senior partner at Shanghai DeBund Law Offices in China, told Reuters that China isn't necessarily saying Microsoft has done anything to interfere with its investigation at this point, but that the real message lies between the lines -- "We might be more lenient if you don't resist, otherwise we'll be tough."

Microsoft's been under the microscope since last summer for anti-monopoly concerns related to compatibility problems, bundling, and document authentication.