The U.S. Department of Justice and a group of states will file a lawsuit against Live Nation Entertainment for antitrust violations on Thursday in New York, according to Bloomberg News. The long-awaited action is reportedly tied to Ticketmaster’s control of concert ticket sales, and will reportedly seek a structural remedy including a possible breakup of the entertainment giant.

Sources had told TicketNews on Wednesday that the lawsuit was imminent, and could be filed by the end of the day, but Bloomberg News says it will come Thursday, filed in the Southern District of New York.

Requests for comment sent to the Department of Justice, Live Nation Entertainment, and Ticketmaster have not received a response as of Thursday evening.

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Dogged by accusations of anticompetitive conduct in the entertainment and ticketing businesses, Live Nation and Ticketmaster have been under a consent decree agreed to as part of their merger for more than a decade. In 2019, they settled with the Department of Justice after an investigation found multiple violations of that consent decree, which was modified and extended.

“This news is a victory for the millions of American fans who have been taken advantage of, screwed, ripped off, and outright robbed by this corrupt and greedy entity,” said Congressman Bill Pascrell (D-NJ), a longtime critic of the Live Nation “monopoly” and author of the BOSS and SWIFT Act.. “Assistant Attorney General Kantor and FTC Chairwoman Khan have today commenced one of the most fan-friendly moves by our federal government in many years. It is a new day for consumers in America.”

Shares for Live Nation Entertainment (NYSE: LYV) fell by 7% after trading closed Wednesday on the report.

Pressure for antitrust action ratcheted up again in the wake of the disastrously botched fall 2022 sale process for Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour. That debacle led to multiple lawsuits filed by angry fans, as well as public denouncement by lawmakers at both the federal and local level. Within months, the company was subjected to a contentious hearing before a Senate subcommittee, which saw CFO Joe Berchtold attempt to push blame for the failed onsale and ever-skyrocketing ticket prices on to ticket resale businesses rather than Ticketmaster or Live Nation’s failure to innovate due to its overwhelming market share.

Shortly after that, it was reported that the DOJ was already investigating the company, exploring whether or not a lawsuit would make sense to reign in its allegedly anticompetitive ways.

More recently, Berchtold and other Live Nation officials have been trying to spin the potential for the lawsuit as unlikely, or unserious. “I think it’s fair to say I continue to believe that we fundamentally have business practices that are fully defensible,” Berchtold told attendees at the JP Morgan Global Technology, Media and Communications conference earlier this week. He previously indicated that the company doesn’t believe the DOJ has any right to break up their ownership of Ticketmaster.

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FURTHER READING | Live Nation in Late Scramble to Avoid DOJ Antitrust Lawsuit

Live Nation Entertainment unquestionably has resources to fight a prolonged court battle against the government. Its defense will be anchored by longtime antitrust litigator Dan Wall, who joined the company as an executive VP in 2023 after many years serving as outside counsel. Wall began his career as a trial lawyer with the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, where he was a member of the landmark 1982 U.S. vs. AT&T antitrust case that forced the breakup of the Bell System of telephone companies.

Stick with TicketNews for more coverage on this lawsuit, which will almost certainly have enormous impact on the entertainment business as a whole, regardless of its outcome.