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Illinois joins lawsuit to stop the T-Mobile, Sprint merger

FILE PHOTO: A smartphone with the Sprint logo is seen in front of a screen, the projection on the T-mobile logo, in this picture illustration April 30, 2018. REUTERS/dado Ruvic/Image/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Illinois has joined a multistate lawsuit aimed at stopping the merger of its U.S. wireless carriers, T-Mobile US Inc (TMUS.(O) and Sprint Corp (S. N), the New York attorney general’s office, which is leading the effort, along with California, said on Tuesday.

Illinois joins 15 other states and the District of Columbia, and in the quest to stop the $26 billion merger, which the states argue it will lead to higher costs for the consumer.

A spokeswoman for T-Mobile, said the company had no comment.

“With Illinois’ in addition to our case, more than one-half of the U.S. population is now represented by the states of that object to block the anti-competitive megamerger with T-Mobile and Sprint,” said New York Attorney General Letitia James.

Last month, a U.s. District Court in Manhattan, ordered that the investigation be delayed until the first of December. 9, in a victory for the states who had said that they needed more time to investigate what the deal is.

“With less and less companies that are in competition with each other, customers would have less choice, higher prices, less innovation and lower quality service,” Illinois Attorney-General, Kwame Raoul, said in a statement.

The Ministry of Justice has signed off on the merger, and whereas, the Federal Communications Commission has indicated that it plans to adopt, and has begun the process of formally-to do so.

In order to gain this approval, the third and fourth largest U.S. companies, has agreed to divest Sprint prepaid companies, in satellite-tv company Dish Network Corp’s (DISH.D) the creation of the fourth AMERICAN mobile operator.

Reporting by Diane Bartz; Editing by Tom Brown

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