MediaNews, Hearst trial set to proceed 

Local businessman Clint Reilly’s lawsuit to reverse the complicated sale of the Contra Costa Times and the San Jose Mercury News to Denver newspaper baron Dean Singleton’s MediaNews Group Inc. is on schedule for a March 2 case management conference and an April 30 trial, attorneys involved in the case said.

Reilly contends the 2006 sale of the two former Knight-Ridder Inc. papers and other properties by McClatchy Co. (MNI) to MediaNews creates a Bay Area media monopoly, in part because the San Francisco Chronicle’s owner Hearst Corp. helped finance the deal.

Except for the Chronicle, MediaNews now owns nearly every paid-circulation daily newspaper in the Bay Area.

Several formerly sealed files on the case were made available last week through legal action by the San Francisco Bay Guardian newspaper and the nonprofit Media Alliance. Unless new documents are introduced, all records likely to be unsealed are now available to the public, attorney James Wheaton said. His firm represents the Guardian and the alliance.

The records are available online at https://ecf.cand.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/login.pl. The fee-per-document has a $2.40 cap.

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