Skip to content

INSTITUTE FOR JUSTICE v. U.S.CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION and 11 other new FOIA lawsuits

by Harry Hammitt on December 15th, 2016

We have added 82 documents from 12 FOIA cases filed between December 4, 2016 and December 10, 2016. Note that there can be delays between the date a case is filed and when it shows up on PACER. If there are filings from this period that have yet to be posted on PACER, this FOIA Project list may not be complete.

Click on a case title below to view details for that case, including links to the associated docket and complaint documents.

  1. INSTITUTE FOR JUSTICE v. U.S.CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION (filed Dec 8, 2016)
    The Institute for Justice submitted a FOIA request to U.S. Customs and Border Protection for records CBP used from the Treasury Department’s seized asset database. The agency denied the request as overbroad and insufficiently specific. The Institute for Justice filed an administrative appeal. The agency denied the Institute for Justice’s appeal, arguing that all data taken from the database was protected by Exemption 7(E) (investigative methods and techniques). The Institute for Justice then filed suit.
    Issues: Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  2. Craig Scott Rosebraugh v. U.S. Department of Justice (filed Dec 5, 2016)
    Craig Rosebraugh submitted a FOIA request to the FBI for records about himself. The agency located 4,826 pages of potentially responsive records and told Rosebraugh that he would need to pay $145 for duplication on to a CD. He agreed to pay the fees. The FBI then told him that his request would be assigned to the large-track backlog. He appealed that decision to the Office of Information Policy. OIP told Rosebraugh that it would not consider his appeal because the FBI had not yet made an adverse determination. Rosebraugh then filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  3. JUDICIAL WATCH, INC. v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE (filed Dec 5, 2016)
    Judicial Watch submitted a FOIA request to the Department of State for records concerning emails sent or received by Director of Policy Anne-Marie Slaughter at her Princeton University email account pertaining to agency business from January 2009 February 2011. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Judicial Watch filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  4. JUDICIAL WATCH, INC. v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE (filed Dec 5, 2016)
    Judicial Watch submitted a FOIA request to the Department of State for records concerning determinations made by the Office of Legal Counsel that emails of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton were not official agency records. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Judicial Watch filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  5. JUDICIAL WATCH, INC. v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (filed Dec 5, 2016)
    Judicial Watch submitted a FOIA request to the FBI for records discovered, recovered, or retrieved from any equipment connected to or used to backup former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s email system. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Judicial Watch filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  6. Allen v. US Homeland of Security (filed Dec 5, 2016)
    Allen Kaye submitted a FOIA request to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for records concerning Jaswinder Pal Singh. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request. The agency released eight pages in full and 11 pages in part, citing Exemption 7(C) (invasion of privacy concerning law enforcement records) and Exemption 7(E) (investigative methods and techniques). Kaye filed an administrative appeal and the agency released another 14 pages with redactions. Kaye then filed suit.
    Issues: Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  7. Kehmeier v. United States Department of Justice Tax Division (filed Dec 6, 2016)
    Thomas Kehmeier submitted a FOIA request to the Department of Justice’s Tax Division for records concerning statutes that gave the government the authority to prescribe tax tables and create computational procedures for measuring a tax. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Kehmeier filed suit.
    Issues: Adequacy – Search, Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Litigation – Vaughn index
  8. BRUSTEIN & MANASEVIT, PLLC v. UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION (filed Dec 6, 2016)
    The law firm of Brustein & Manasevit submitted a FOIA request to the Department of Education for records concerning ethical concerns about the agency’s counsel representing the department while also drafting decisions by the Secretary of Education. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request and told invoked a ten-day extension. The law firm attempted to query the agency several times as to the status of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Brustein & Manasevit filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  9. Schoenberg v. United States Department of Justice (filed Dec 7, 2016)
    E. Randol Schoenberg submitted a FOIA request to the FBI for the search warrants and related applications used to obtain emails from Huma Abedin’s computer that were related to her work with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Schoenberg filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees
  10. Friends of Animals et al v. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (filed Dec 8, 2016)
    Friends of Animals and Sea Shepherd Legal submitted a FOIA request to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for records concerning final and pending approvals for anthropogenic activities affecting the Cook Inlet beluga whale. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Friends of Animals and Sea Shepherd Legal filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Public Interest Fee Waiver
  11. INSTITUTE FOR JUSTICE v. INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE (filed Dec 8, 2016)
    The Institute for Justice submitted a FOIA request to the IRS for records concerning its asset forfeiture database. The Institute for Justice also requested a fee waiver. The agency told the Institute for Justice that the request would require 34,000 hours and would cost $753,000. The Institute for Justice appealed the denial of its request for a fee waiver. The agency told the Institute for Justice that its fee waiver request was imperfect/invalid because it did not meet the requirements of FOIA. The Institute for Justice then filed suit.
    Issues: Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Public Interest Fee Waiver
  12. TOKAR v. U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE (filed Dec 8, 2016)
    Dylan Tokar, a reporter at “Just Anti-Corruption,” a trade publication for attorneys, submitted two FOIA requests to the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice. His first request was for records concerning the selection of monitors under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. His second request was for letters from potential defendants objecting to the release of the records requested in his first FOIA request. After hearing nothing further from the agency concerning his requests, Tokar filed suit.
    Issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Fee Category – Media or Educational, Litigation – Attorney’s fees, Public Interest Fee Waiver

From → FOIA, PACER

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Note: XHTML is allowed. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS