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T-Mobile's John Legere denies Justice Department pushback on Sprint merger

Justice Department staff reportedly told the carriers their merger isn't likely to get approved as currently structured.

T-Mobile CEO John Legere

T-Mobile CEO John Legere says the premise of the Wall Street Journal's story "is simply untrue." 

Getty Images

T-Mobile CEO John Legere denied reports Tuesday that staff in the US Department of Justice told T-Mobile and Sprint their merger likely won't get approved as structured.

The Justice Department's antitrust division is determining whether a combination of the US' third- and fourth-largest wireless service providers would pose a threat to competition, according to a Tuesday report by The Wall Street Journal. Earlier this month, staffers reportedly shared concerns about the deal and the carriers' arguments that merging would lead to key efficiencies for the company.

Legere tweeted that the premise of the Journal's story "is simply untrue," adding the company has no further comment. 

Responding to a request for comment, T-Mobile pointed to Legere's tweet. 

Sprint Executive Chairman Marcelo Claure also tweeted that the Journal's story is "not accurate," saying: "We continue to have discussions with regulators about our proposed merger with T-Mobile. That process is ongoing and we have no further comment."

The Justice Department declined to comment. 

Last year, the two carriers announced their $26 billion deal to merge. It may still take several weeks for a final decision to be made, as several state attorneys general are reviewing the deal and the Federal Communications Commission is seeking more data from the companies about the proposed merger, according to the Journal.

First published April 16 at 3:18 p.m. PT.
Update, April 17: Adds tweet from Marcelo Claure, and that the Justice Department declined to comment.