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No appeal planned on T-Mobile, Sprint merger, NY AG says

New York Attorney General Letitia James, seen at

New York Attorney General Letitia James, seen at a news conference June 11, in Manhattan, was among more than a dozen other state attorneys general who had tried to block the T-Mobile-Sprint merger. Credit: Getty Images / Drew Angerer

The proposed merger of telecom giants T-Mobile US Inc. and Sprint Corp. moved closer to completion after New York’s attorney general said she wouldn’t appeal a federal court decision allowing the merger.

Attorney General Letitia James, together with more than a dozen other state attorneys general, had tried to block the T-Mobile-Sprint combination in federal court in Manhattan. But U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero said last week that he wasn’t convinced the $26.5 billion deal would lead to higher prices or lower quality service as the attorneys general had argued.

Other attorneys general could still file an appeal.

James on Sunday said, “After a thorough analysis, New York has decided not to move forward with an appeal in this case. Instead, we hope to work with all the parties to ensure that consumers get the best pricing and service possible ... and that good-paying jobs are created here.”

James mentioned a call center proposed for Rochester by T-Mobile and Sprint if their merger is approved by New York State officials but did not mention the call center proposed for Nassau County. That center would employ up to 1,000 people and be built without tax breaks, the telecom giants have said.

A spokesman for James said Monday he couldn’t explain why James didn’t include the Nassau call center in her Sunday announcement. A T-Mobile spokeswoman didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Christine Geed, a spokeswoman for Nassau County Executive Laura Curran, said the county "has been enthusiastic" about the T-Mobile-Sprint combination "throughout the regulatory process." She added, "We are supporting the [combined] company in finding a suitable location” for the call center.

T-Mobile and Sprint agreed to merge nearly two years ago. The deal has been approved by federal regulators but still faces scrutiny from California’s independent public utilities commission and a federal district court in Washington.

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