By Mike Scarcella
(Reuters) - A group of companies operating prominent hotels on the Las Vegas strip on Monday asked a U.S. court to dismiss a lawsuit filed by tourists accusing them of conspiring to keep room rental rates artificially high through a revenue management platform.
Lawyers for Caesars Entertainment Inc CZR.O, Treasure Island LLC, Wynn Resorts Holdings LLC, MGM Resorts International MGM.N and other defendants said in a court filing that two tourists who filed the case in January did not show any direct or circumstantial evidence backing their allegation of a conspiracy.
"The complaint fails at the outset because it is missing every essential ingredient necessary to plead an antitrust conspiracy" under legal precedent, the attorneys said in a jointly submitted filing in Nevada federal court.
The plaintiffs alleged in the lawsuit that the hotels used shared pricing algorithms to set rates, instead of making "independent pricing and supply decisions."
Hospitality industry tech company Cendyn Group LLC and subsidiary Rainmaker Group, which the lawsuit said provides the revenue management software products at issue, were also named defendants.
Plaintiffs' lawyers who filed the lawsuit on behalf of a resident of Florida and a resident of Washington state did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.
Lawyers and representatives for the defendants either declined to comment or did not immediately respond to messages seeing comment.
The complaint seeks unspecified monetary damages and class action status.
"There are no procompetitive justifications for the defendants' cartel," the lawsuit said.
The defense attorneys said the complaint did not "identify a single communication between hotel defendants, much less one that suggests a conspiracy was afoot."
Defendants named in the lawsuit control more than two dozen hotels on the Las Vegas Strip, including Caesars Palace, Harrah's, Wynn, MGM Grand, according to the complaint.
The case is Richard Gibson and Heriberto Valiente v. MGM Resorts International et al, U.S. District Court, District of Nevada, No. 2:23-cv-00140-MMD-DJA.
Las Vegas hotels accused of rental price conspiracy in class actionhttps://www.reuters.com/legal/litigation/las-vegas-hotels-accused-rental-price-conspiracy-class-action-2023-01-26/
(Reporting by Mike Scarcella; editing by Leigh Jones)
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