The US Department of Justice aims to file a landmark antitrust lawsuit against Google’s parent company Alphabet in September, although the action is seen by some as premature, according to reports on Thursday.
Citing sources familiar with the matter, New York Times reports Justice Minister William P. Barr quickly traces the action against the recommendation of career lawyers who believe the government is not prepared to succeed in arguing for the case.
The Washington Post in an affirmative report, Barr’s accelerated timeline suggests politically motivated, and federal officials have accelerated efforts to file before the 2020 presidential election. Bringing a case against Google will be an achievement for the Trump administration, as both Republicans and Democrats are concerned to implement reforms designed to neutralize the overgrown influence of large technology companies.
An informal poll of more than 30 attorneys from the Justice Department conducted this summer showed that a “large majority” was convinced that the organization was not ready to appeal against Google, according to The mail. Nevertheless, DOJ lawyers moved forward by order of Barr to complete the preparations by the end of September. Lawyers viewed the timeline as “arbitrary”, according to The times.
The DOJ started the investigation of Google last year as part of a broader investigation of large technology companies that also involve Apple, Facebook and Amazon. At the time, the DOJ said it would focus on “widespread concerns expressed by consumers, businesses and entrepreneurs about search, social media and some online retail services.”
In the case of Google, the Ministry of Justice is targeting potential antitrust violations related to the company’s online search and advertising activities.
While Google faces challenges for its core businesses, it is rumored that Apple is expanding its search capabilities and testing its own online search engine.