updated 07:10 pm EST, Tue December 6, 2011
AT&T and Sprint to wait until end of DOJ case
Sprint and AT&T's dispute over the former company's proposed buyout of T-Mobile will be put on the backburner while the Department of Justice finishes up its investigation of the deal. The companies revealed in separate filings in a US District Court in Washington that they don't want to interfere with the government trial, which is scheduled for February 13. Both Sprint and Cellular South requested a trial date is set immediately after all the evidence is presented in the government case so their arguments can be heard before the transaction is completed.
AT&T, meanwhile, doesn't want any trials to be scheduled until the judge in the Justice Department case is settled. Each lawsuit involves different claims that require different evidence, the company added. The company's lawyer said the judge has the authority to order the merged company to change its behavior after the deal is completed if antitrust violations are discovered. December 9 will see a hearing for all three antitrust cases.
The DOJ lawsuit argues that a merging of the two companies would see a substantial reduction of competition in the marketplace. It is joined by seven states and Puerto Rico. Sprint and Cellular South have similar complaints. [via Bloomberg]