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Justice Dept. Wants FCC to Defer Sprint-Softbank Review

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Jan 29, 2013, 1:14 PM   by Eric M. Zeman

The Department of Justice today asked the Federal Communications Commission to defer its review of Softbank's proposed 70% equity acquisition of Sprint. According to a letter sent to the FCC by the DoJ, it wants time to conduct its own review for any possible security concerns. The letter read, in part, "The Department of Justice, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation, with the concurrence of the Department of Homeland Security, requests that the Federal Communications Commission defer action on the above-referenced matter. DOJ, DHS, and FBI are currently reviewing this matter for any national security, law enforcement, and public safety issues but have not yet completed that effort. We therefore request that the Commission defer action until such time as the Agencies notify the Commission of the completion of their review and, based on the results of such review, request appropriate action by the Commission." Softbank, which offered $20.1 billion for a controlling stake in Sprint, is based in Japan. Sprint competitor AT&T last year warned that federal regulators should weigh giving control of so much U.S. spectrum to a foreign firm. The FCC has not officially responded to the DoJ's request.


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Jan 29, 2013, 4:18 PM

Here you have it....

"The review is likely aimed at ensuring that Softbank continues to work with U.S. law enforcement to create wiretaps when there is a court order, said James Lewis, a cybersecurity expert with the Center for Strategic and International Affairs." - Reuters

Softbank will obtain Sprint, Sprint will obtain Clearwire, AT&T and Verizon will be pooping bricks....
LOL well said. Its only a matter of time. I love how the industry right now is split into two groups greedy companies with expensive service for less and more flexible companies with economical service options for less. I wonder who is going to win th...

Jan 29, 2013, 1:54 PM

AT&T is worried

While I believe the Softbank majority purchase will ultimately go through, this shows the political influence of a wireless business in Washington.
AT&T will do what ever it takes to slow, block, interfere with the growth of a competitor. They know this will significantly harm their business due to the enhanced, formidable competition.
A big plus for consumers however.
And you think its just AT&T? I would include the other 2 major carriers in this.

Jan 29, 2013, 3:49 PM

Has D.C. forgotten about T-mobile?

The have no stance using a foreign company owning lots of spectrum. T-mobile USA is 100% own by their Germany parent company, but Sprint would only be 70% own by Softbank. If they block this based of foreign ownership then they better be ready to break T-mobile up.
Unfortunately it doesnt work that way, their main concern is "National Security"

https://www.phonescoop.com/articles/discuss.php?fm=m ... »

He pretty much answered some of the concerns. ;)
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