Washington State Seeks to Dismiss Costco Suit

Attorneys for members of the Washington state Liquor Control Board and a lobbying group representing beer and wine distributors have filed motions to dismiss part or all of a lawsuit by Costco Wholesale Corp. that alleges that Washington’s liquor regulations violate federal antitrust laws and obstruct interstate commerce.

Among the assertions, attorneys for the defendants argue that Costco has failed to show that it has been harmed by the regulations and that federal court does not have jurisdiction over the case. The motions were filed last month in the U.S. District Court in the Western District of Washington. Costco has said it wants to buy directly from breweries and wineries, and sued the Washington State Liquor Control Board in February, saying the regulations limit competition and force retailers to charge higher prices.