updated 12:15 am EDT, Tue October 25, 2011
Sprint faces potential setback in lawsuit
US District Judge Ellen Huvelle has denied Sprint's request for access to internal AT&T documents. The denial is a potential setback for Sprint's civil lawsuit filed against its competitor to prevent the latter company's proposed T-Mobile buyout. The judge did not go as far as granting AT&T's request to dismiss the lawsuit, however.
The companies have continued to spar over document access as part of the discovery phase of the ongoing lawsuits. Sprint claimed that AT&T's request for access to internal documents went far beyond what should be expected.
"You don't stand in the shoes of the consumer or the Department of Justice," Judge Huvelle said, suggesting the DoJ will maintain a higher level of access in its separate case against AT&T. She added that access to AT&T documents is not "efficient or fair."
Both the government and Sprint have sued to block the acquisition, arguing that such a merger will be detrimental to consumers and competitors. AT&T claims the buyout will add jobs and help the company expand wireless broadband coverage.
Judge Huvelle has yet to announce a decision regarding the motion to dismiss Sprint's lawsuit. She currently oversees both the Sprint lawsuit and the DoJ proceedings. [via Reuters]