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DOJ Eyes Clear Channel – Again

DOJ Eyes Clear Channel - Again

The Department of Justice is following up on complaints about Clear Channel. A DOJ official told the House Judiciary Committee Thursday the department has two on-going investigations. One is looking into allegations made by recording artists that they are required to appear at Clear Channel-owned concert venues in exchange for airplay. The other probe, according to Assistant Attorney General Hewitt Pate, is trying to determine whether the radio group is trying to dominate southern California markets through U.S. and Mexican station holdings.
A Clear Channel spokesman said the company is cooperating with the investigations, which he termed “routine.”
Pate disclosed the probes in response to complaints by California Rep. Howard Berman, who said the DOJ had failed to follow-up on his 2002 anti-trust complaints.
In the wake of big dollar deals following passage of the Telecom Act, radio deals became large enough to warrant DOJ antitrust scrutiny and several radio groups were under the DOJ’s eye.