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HBO President and Chief Revenue Officer Simon Sutton told the U.S. District Court in Washington about his company's content showdowns with Charter Communications Inc. (CHTR) - Get Charter Communications Inc. Report and Alphabet Inc.'s (GOOGL) - Get Alphabet Inc. Report upstart YouTube TV Wednesday.

The Department of Justice argues that AT&T Inc. (T) - Get AT&T Inc. Report will use HBO and other networks as weapons if its acquisition of Time Warner Inc. (TWX) succeeds. 

Sutton acknowledged that Time Warner has tried to use HBO as leverage to persuade pay-TV companies to take Turner networks, with mixed results.

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Take Google's YouTube TV, which launched last year. HBO and Turner were in negotiations with Google's linear TV networks. HBO eased off talks, however, to put pressure on YouTube TV to take Turner as well. 

Time Warner Chairman and CEO Jeff Bewkes outlined the strategy in a 2015 email to HBO boss Richard Plepler, saying the company would coordinate negotiations between Turner and HBO.

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