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Court date set for ‘landmark’ Freeserve case against Oftel

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The Competition Appeals Tribunal (CAT) - the UK's highest specialist competition law court - is expected to rule next week on a dispute between ISP Freeserve and telecoms regulator Oftel.

The long-awaited ruling - which is already being described as a "landmark" case in some quarters - follows an appeal by Freeserve to the CAT after Oftel dismissed its complaint about BT early last year.

That complaint, made in March 2002, alleged that BT Openworld was given advance notice of a 40 per cent price reduction in wholesale broadband access.

Freeserve said this enabled BT Openworld to put together marketing campaigns - and importantly price offers - in advance of the rest of the market, which Freeserve also believes were cross-subsidised and predatory.

However, this was dismissed by Oftel, hence the appeal to the CAT.

The CAT's judgment will be "handed down" at 10.30am on 16 April. More detailed info on the case can be found here. ®

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