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Feds Seek Dismissal Of Spy Case Against AT&T

The federal government moved to dismiss a class action lawsuit that claimed AT&T helped the National Security Agency secretly collect information on Americans' communications.

The U.S. Department of Justice filed a request over the weekend to dismiss a lawsuit brought by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. The EFF sued AT&T in January, claiming the telecommunications company violated the law by helping the federal government obtain information for its NSA surveillance program.

DOJ filed a notice last week saying that it intended to intervene and seek dismissal because the information contained in the suit includes military and state secrets. It argued that exposing the program could harm national security. The federal government followed through on the notice over the weekend, filing a formal request for dismissal.

EFF argues that the program has been the subject of front page news articles and government press conferences, and therefore should no longer be considered secret.

Key declarations in the case are under seal, but a former telephone company technician's broad description of how he believes AT&T was involved made it into public legal documents.

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