Bad news for Silicon Valley: William Barr is taking control of antitrust probes

Recent moves have sidelined DOJ’s antitrust leaders, leaving oversight of investigations into companies like Google to the AG’s handpicked staff.

Attorney General William Barr has spent months taking greater control of the Justice Department’s antitrust probes into the big tech companies, a development that could increase the peril for major players like Google and Facebook.

Barr has centralized oversight of antitrust matters under a handful of appointees in his office and that of his deputy attorney general, Jeffrey Rosen. Those moves have sidelined the Antitrust Division’s current leadership, headed by Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim, who for the past year has been the public face of DOJ’s investigations into Silicon Valley’s treatment of its users and customers.

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“I think a lot of people wonder how such huge behemoths that now exist in Silicon Valley have taken shape under the nose of the antitrust enforcers.”

Attorney General William Barr