LAS VEGAS (AP) — The rival daily newspapers in Nevada’s largest city are trading new broadsides in their years-long legal fight over one of the last remaining joint-operating agreements in the US.
Attorneys for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and Las Vegas Sun went before a federal magistrate judge Tuesday to argue pretrial motions in an ongoing antitrust lawsuit.
The Review-Journal is accusing Brian Greenspun, publisher of the Las Vegas Sun, of offering to accept a $20 million buyout and quit publishing his newspaper in 2016, after the Review-Journal was bought in December 2015 by the family of casino mogul Sheldon Adelson.
“When the Adelsons refused to pay,” a Monday court filing alleged, “Mr. Greenspun retaliated by sabotaging the joint Review Journal/Sun newspaper and diverting readers to his separate online news product,” which is not part of the joint-operating pact.
The Sun, in a separate recent filing in the case before US District Judge Gloria Navarro, accused the Review-Journal of concealing from the public and the court that Adelson himself has operational control of the Review-Journal.
Sun attorney Leif Reid on Tuesday called that a strategy to protect the billionaire casino mogul, to prevent questioning by Sun attorneys and to gain an advantage in the antitrust case.
“He’s the publisher of the Review-Journal,” Reid said. “They’ve kept that from readers.”
Some Review-Journal stories, particularly about business and the casino industry, end with italicized disclaimers saying the paper “is owned by the family of Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson.”