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U.S. asks judge to sanction Google in pretrial document fight

U.S. asks judge to sanction Google in pretrial document fight

The US Justice Department has asked a judge to determine that Alphabet Inc’s Google broke antitrust laws in the search sector by misusing an attorney-client privilege designation to avoid handing over documents.

When writing about sensitive business matters in a court filing, the Justice Department recommended that Google be sanctioned for adopting a “Communicate with Care” policy that urges employees to include an attorney and a request for assistance.

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The department said that “often, realizing the game, the in-house counsel included in these Communicate-with-Care letters does not react at all,” noting that many of the conversations were regarding revenue-sharing agreements Google had signed with other companies.

Google has turned over more than 4 million documents to the authorities, according to a Google spokesman. “Our personnel has worked diligently for years to respond to inquiries and litigation,” the representative continued, “and any accusations to the contrary are totally incorrect.”

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The Justice Department has requested for the records to be produced if the in-house counsel does not respond. It requested that the matter be heard by U.S. District Judge Amit Mehta.

The Justice Department filed the complaint in 2020, with a trial set for September 2023.

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