Attorney General Open to Settlement in American-US Airways Suit
The United States Attorney General said on Monday that the government would be willing to settle its antitrust lawsuit against American Airlines and US Airways if the airlines were to agree to significant divestitures.
Speaking at a news conference Monday that was unrelated to the airline case, Attorney General Eric Holder said that “any resolution in this case [would include] divestitures of facilities at key, constrained airports throughout the United States.”
The government’s settlement talks with the two airlines “are ongoing, and we hope that we will be able to resolve this short of trial,” he said, adding that the Justice Department is fully prepared to try the case if the airlines do not meet the government’s demands.
The attorney general indicated that there were “a number of ways” that American and US Airways could address the government’s concerns and preserve competition but he declined to provide specific examples. He admitted that there was a specific number of slots that would need to be sold as an outcome of a settlement, but added, “I won’t tell you what it is.”
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