The U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) has filed a new motion to dismiss a lawsuit over AT&T\u2019s alleged participation in a government-sponsored wiretapping program.The DoJ filed a new petition Monday, just 11 days after Judge Vaughn R. Walker of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California denied the government\u2019s motion for dismissal or summary judgment. In the case, civil liberties group the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) accuses AT&T of participating in an allegedly illegal wiretapping program created by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA).The DoJ, in Monday\u2019s petition to an appeals court, argues Walker took the "highly unusual action" of ignoring the U.S. government\u2019s claim that the case involves state secrets. The judge "has thereby placed at risk particularly sensitive national security interests," wrote DoJ lawyers.Walker, in this July 20 ruling, did allow the U.S. government and AT&T to make a quick appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.While the DoJ contends the NSA program is legal, its lawyers wrote in the petition that AT&T cannot defend itself against the EFF allegations without "disclosure of state secrets."AT&T "could neither confirm nor deny whether it was indeed cooperating with the NSA concerning foreign intelligence gathering activities," the DoJ\u2019s lawyers wrote.An EFF spokeswoman didn\u2019t immediately respond to a request for comment.By Grant Gross, IDG News Service (Washington Bureau)Related Links:\n\nWiretapping Suit Against AT&T Can Move Forward\n\nAT&T, Justice Dept. Fight Wiretap SuitCheck out our CIO News Alerts and Tech Informer pages for more updated news coverage.