UK: Ofcom could face judicial review over Murdoch’s £11.7bn move for Sky

Regulator Ofcom is facing a potential legal challenge on its ruling that Sky would remain “fit and proper” to hold a UK broadcasting licence if it was snapped up by Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox.

Activist group Avaaz has hired lawyers and launched the first steps of a judicial review against the communications regulator following its report into Mr Murdoch’s £11.7 billion (US$15.1 billion) swoop.

Solicitors representing the group have issued a letter before claim to Ofcom, which the watchdog has 14 days to respond to before a formal judicial review can begin.

It comes after the government asked the regulator earlier this month to provide further advice before Culture Secretary Karen Bradley decides whether the proposed tie-up should face an in-depth investigation.

Ofcom told the Secretary of State in June that the takeover attempt raised “public interest concerns” and she could refer the deal to the Competition and Markets Authority for a fuller investigation on the grounds of media plurality.

The watchdog said the merger would not stop Sky from holding a broadcasting license. Alex Wilks, campaign director at Avaaz, said: “Ofcom’s made mistake after mistake in deciding to give the Murdochs a clean bill of health to take over more of our media.

Full Content: The Guardian

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