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Kentucky Attorney General Files Federal Suit Against Marathon Petroleum

Kentucky Attorney General Jack Conway has filed a federal lawsuit against Marathon Petroleum, accusing the company of abusing its monopoly on the wholesale gasoline market in the commonwealth.

Conway says Marathon is engaging in anti-competitive practices that result in higher gas prices in Kentucky, particularly in Louisville and Northern Kentucky.

At a press conference in Louisville Tuesday to announce the suit, Conway said he’s frustrated with the lack of action by the federal government on Marathon’s price manipulation.

“And if I have to pursue this case without a lot of anti-trust resources in my office—or without a lot of that expertise—but if I have to pursue this case because the federal government and this administration won’t do its job, so be it," he said.

Marathon has controlled more than 90 percent of the gasoline wholesale business in Kentucky since its merger with Ashland Oil in 1998.

Marathon said in a brief statement that it disputes Conway’s allegations and will defend the suit vigorously in court.

Rick Howlett is host of WFPL's weekly talk show, "In Conversation." Email Rick at rhowlett@lpm.org.