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Case TitleOsen LLC v. United States Central Command
DistrictSouthern District of New York
CityFoley Square
Case Number1:2018cv06069
Date Filed2018-07-03
Date Closed2019-12-17
JudgeMagistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses
PlaintiffOsen LLC
Case DescriptionOsen LLC, a law firm representing service members and the families of service members killed in Iraq and Afghanistan by Iranian-backed terrorists, submitted FOIA requests to U.S. Central Command for records concerning such attacks. The agency acknowledged receipt of the requests, but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Osen LLC filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantUnited States Central Command
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Complaint attachment 2
Complaint attachment 3
Complaint attachment 4
Opinion/Order [37]
Opinion/Order [41]
FOIA Project Annotation: A federal magistrate judge in New York has ruled that Osen, LLC, which represents service members who were victims of terrorism in Iraq and their families in their suit against Iran, is collaterally estopped from relitigating a previous ruling by District Court Judge Katherine Failla, finding that the Defense Department properly withheld records that could identify Iranian-backed terrorists who had been accused of terrorist attacks in Iraq under Exemption 6 (invasion of privacy) because the current litigation involves the same parties and the same issue. Only 28 documents remained in dispute in Osen's suit against CENTCOM, involving claims under Exemption 1 (national security) and Exemption 6. Osen only challenged the Exemption 6 claims protecting identifying information about terrorists, arguing that Failla's earlier ruling was not binding, or, alternatively was wrongly decided. Noting that the doctrine of collateral estoppel applied to FOIA litigation, Magistrate Judge Barbara Moses pointed out that "to be sure, the specific reports requested by Osen in this case are not identical to those in Osen I. However, the underlying legal issues " whether the Redacted Individuals have a privacy interest, whether disclosure of their names would further the 'core purposes of the FOIA,' and whether, on balance , CENTCOM was entitled to apply Exemption 6 as it did " are the same." Moses indicated that, even assuming collateral estoppel did not apply under the circumstances, she would still reach the same conclusion. She noted that Osen had relied heavily on Broward Bulldog v. Dept of Justice, 2017 WL 2119675 (S.D. Fla, May 16, 2017), which had rejected some government Exemption 6 claims after finding that the public interest in knowing more about the 9/11 terrorist attacks outweighed the privacy interests of individuals identified in the 9/11 report. However, Moses pointed out that the Eleventh Circuit had just reversed the district court's decision on the privacy balance in Broward Bulldog v. Dept of Justice, 2019 WL 4593316 (11th Cir., Sept. 23, 2019). She observed that "the Eleventh Circuit acknowledged that the public might have 'some' interest in disclosure of the identifying information at issue " which could 'reveal how the government took action with respect to certain leads,' or permit media outlets 'to contact individuals involved in the investigation' " but held that those were not 'significant public interests that can outweigh the strong privacy interests in the clearly identifying information at issue.'" Osen also argued that CENTCOM had previously disclosed names or photographs of some of the terrorist suspects. Under those circumstances, Moses explained that "that contention, if true, could bar CENTCOM from invoking Exemption 6 here." However, Moses observed that Osen had not provided evidence that CENTCOM had previously disclosed identifying information but indicated that if Osen wanted to provide such evidence she would consider it.
Issues: Litigation - Jurisdiction - Failure to State a Claim, Exemption 6 - Invasion of privacy
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2018-07-031FILING ERROR - DEFICIENT PLEADING - SIGNATURE ERROR - COMPLAINT against United States Central Command. (Filing Fee $ 400.00, Receipt Number 0208-15283871)Document filed by Osen LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A, # 2 Exhibit B, # 3 Exhibit C, # 4 Exhibit D)(Friedman, William) Modified on 7/5/2018 (pc). (Entered: 07/03/2018)
2018-07-032FILING ERROR - PDF ERROR - CIVIL COVER SHEET filed. (Friedman, William) Modified on 7/5/2018 (pc). (Entered: 07/03/2018)
2018-07-033RULE 7.1 CORPORATE DISCLOSURE STATEMENT. No Corporate Parent. Document filed by Osen LLC.(Friedman, William) (Entered: 07/03/2018)
2018-07-034REQUEST FOR ISSUANCE OF SUMMONS as to United States Central Command, re: 1 Complaint. Document filed by Osen LLC. (Friedman, William) (Entered: 07/03/2018)
2018-07-035STATEMENT OF RELATEDNESS re: that this action be filed as related to 17-cv-4457 (KPF). Document filed by Osen LLC.(Friedman, William) (Entered: 07/03/2018)
2018-07-05***NOTICE TO ATTORNEY REGARDING DEFICIENT CIVIL COVER SHEET. Notice to attorney William Adam Friedman to RE-FILE Document No. 2 Civil Cover Sheet. The filing is deficient for the following reason(s): Civil cover sheet does not cite related case number and judge. (pc) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-05CASE OPENING INITIAL ASSIGNMENT NOTICE: The above-entitled action is assigned to Judge Unassigned. (pc) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-05Case Designated ECF. (pc) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-05CASE REFERRED TO Judge Katherine Polk Failla as possibly related to 17cv4457. (pc) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-056ELECTRONIC SUMMONS ISSUED as to United States Central Command. (pc) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-05***NOTICE TO ATTORNEY REGARDING DEFICIENT PLEADING. Notice to Attorney William Adam Friedman to RE-FILE Document No. 1 Complaint. The filing is deficient for the following reason(s): the pleading was not signed by the attorney who filed it. Re-file the pleading using the event type Complaint found under the event list Complaints and Other Initiating Documents - attach the correct signed PDF - select the individually named filer/filers - select the individually named party/parties the pleading is against. (pc) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-057CIVIL COVER SHEET filed. (Friedman, William) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-058NOTICE OF APPEARANCE by Michael Jacob Radine on behalf of Osen LLC. (Radine, Michael) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-059COMPLAINT against United States Central Command. Document filed by Osen LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A, # 2 Exhibit B, # 3 Exhibit C, # 4 Exhibit D)(Radine, Michael) (Entered: 07/05/2018)
2018-07-09CASE DECLINED AS NOT RELATED. Case referred as related to 17cv4457 and declined by Judge Katherine Polk Failla and returned to wheel for assignment. (wb) (Entered: 07/09/2018)
2018-07-09NOTICE OF CASE REASSIGNMENT to Judge George B. Daniels. Judge Unassigned is no longer assigned to the case. (wb) (Entered: 07/09/2018)
2018-07-09Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses is so designated. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. Section 636(c) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 73(b)(1) parties are notified that they may consent to proceed before a United States Magistrate Judge. Parties who wish to consent may access the necessary form at the following link: http://nysd.uscourts.gov/forms.php . (wb) (Entered: 07/09/2018)
2018-07-1610INITIAL PRETRIAL CONFERENCE: Initial Conference set for 10/11/2018 at 09:30 AM in Courtroom 11A at the United States District Courthouse, 500 Pearl Street, New York, NY 10007 before Judge George B. Daniels. (Signed by Judge George B. Daniels on 7/16/2018) (mro) (Entered: 07/16/2018)
2018-07-1811NOTICE OF APPEARANCE by Andrew Edward Krause on behalf of United States Central Command. (Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 07/18/2018)
2018-08-1312ANSWER to 9 Complaint. Document filed by United States Central Command.(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 08/13/2018)
2018-08-1613CONSENT TO JURISDICTION BY A US MAGISTRATE JUDGE by Osen LLC, United States Central Command. (Case No Longer Referred to Magistrate Judge) CASE ASSIGNED to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses. (Signed by Judge George B. Daniels on 8/16/2018) (jwh) (Entered: 08/16/2018)
2018-08-1714ORDER SCHEDULING INITIAL CASE MANAGEMENT CONFERENCE: Initial Conference set for 9/26/2018 at 10:30 AM in Courtroom 20A, 500 Pearl Street, New York, NY 10007 before Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses. (As further set forth in this Order.) (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 8/17/2018) (cf) (Entered: 08/17/2018)
2018-09-1815JOINT PRE-CONFERENCE STATEMENT pursuant to the Court's August 17, 2018 order . Document filed by Osen LLC.(Radine, Michael) (Entered: 09/18/2018)
2018-09-26Minute Entry for proceedings held before Magistrate Judge Barbara Moses: Initial Pretrial Conference held on 9/26/2018. (Snell, Kevin) (Entered: 09/26/2018)
2018-09-2616INITIAL CASE MANAGEMENT ORDER: The parties shall not amend their pleadings, or join additional parties, absent leave of the Court. Defendant's summary judgment motion shall be filed no later than November 21, 2018. Plaintiff's opposition and cross-motion for summary judgment shall be filed no later than December 19, 2018. Defendant's optional reply shall be filed no later than January 9, 2019, and plaintiff's optional reply in support of its cross-motion shall be filed no later than January 23, 2019. (As further set forth in this Order.) Motions due by 11/21/2018. Cross Motions due by 12/19/2018. Responses due by 1/9/2019 Replies due by 1/23/2019. (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 9/26/2018) (cf) (Entered: 09/26/2018)
2018-10-1017LETTER MOTION for Extension of Time addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Andrew E. Krause dated October 10, 2018. Document filed by United States Central Command.(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 10/10/2018)
2018-10-1018ORDER granting 17 Letter Motion for Extension of Time. Application GRANTED. The briefing schedule on the parties' anticipated motions for summary judgment is modified as noted above. Motions due by 12/5/2018. (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 10/10/2018) (cf) (Entered: 10/10/2018)
2018-10-10Set/Reset Deadlines: Cross Motions due by 1/9/2019. Responses due by 1/30/2019 Replies due by 2/13/2019. (cf) (Entered: 10/10/2018)
2018-11-2619LETTER MOTION for Extension of Time addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Andrew E. Krause dated November 26, 2018. Document filed by United States Central Command.(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 11/26/2018)
2018-11-2620ORDER granting 19 Letter Motion for Extension of Time. Application GRANTED. The briefing schedule on the parties anticipated motions for summary judgment is modified as indicated below. Defendants summary judgment motion shall be filed no later than December 19, 2018. Plaintiffs opposition and cross-motion for summary judgment shall be filed no later than January 23, 2019. Defendants optional reply shall be filed no later than February 13, 2019. Plaintiffs optional reply in support of its cross-motion shall be filed no later than February 27, 2019. SO ORDERED. (Motions due by 12/19/2018.) (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 11/26/2018) (jca) (Entered: 11/26/2018)
2018-11-26Set/Reset Deadlines: Responses due by 1/23/2019, Replies due by 2/27/2019. (jca) (Entered: 11/26/2018)
2018-12-1921MOTION for Summary Judgment . Document filed by United States Central Command. Responses due by 1/23/2019(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 12/19/2018)
2018-12-1922MEMORANDUM OF LAW in Support re: 21 MOTION for Summary Judgment . . Document filed by United States Central Command. (Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 12/19/2018)
2018-12-1923DECLARATION of Major General Michael Erik Kurilla in Support re: 21 MOTION for Summary Judgment .. Document filed by United States Central Command. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1 (Delegation of classification authority), # 2 Exhibit 2 (Vaughn index))(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 12/19/2018)
2018-12-2724STANDING ORDER M10-468: The United States Attorney's Office shall notify the Court immediately upon the restoration of Department of Justice funding. (As further set forth in this Order.) (Signed by Judge Colleen McMahon on 12/27/18) (yv) (Entered: 01/02/2019)
2019-01-3125ORDER: Plaintiff's opposition to defendant's motion for summary judgment and cross motion for summary judgment shall be filed no later than February 21, 2019. Defendant's optional reply shall be filed no later than March 14, 2019. Plaintiff's optional reply in support of its cross motion for summary judgment shall be filed no later than March 28, 2019. (As further set forth in this Order.) (Responses due by 2/21/2019, Replies due by 3/28/2019.) (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 1/31/2019) (cf) (Entered: 01/31/2019)
2019-02-2126CROSS MOTION for Summary Judgment . Document filed by Osen LLC. Responses due by 3/14/2019(Radine, Michael) (Entered: 02/21/2019)
2019-02-2127MEMORANDUM OF LAW in Support re: 26 CROSS MOTION for Summary Judgment . and in Opposition to Defendant's Motion for Summary Judgment. . Document filed by Osen LLC. (Radine, Michael) (Entered: 02/21/2019)
2019-02-2128DECLARATION of Michael J. Radine in Support re: 26 CROSS MOTION for Summary Judgment .. Document filed by Osen LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2, # 3 Exhibit 3, # 4 Exhibit 4, # 5 Exhibit 5, # 6 Exhibit 6, # 7 Exhibit 7, # 8 Exhibit 8A, # 9 Exhibit 8B, # 10 Exhibit 9, # 11 Exhibit 10, # 12 Exhibit 11, # 13 Exhibit 12, # 14 Exhibit 13, # 15 Exhibit 14, # 16 Exhibit 15, # 17 Exhibit 16, # 18 Exhibit 17, # 19 Exhibit 18, # 20 Exhibit 19, # 21 Exhibit 20, # 22 Exhibit 21, # 23 Exhibit 22, # 24 Exhibit 23, # 25 Exhibit 24, # 26 Exhibit 25, # 27 Exhibit 26, # 28 Exhibit 27, # 29 Exhibit 28, # 30 Exhibit 29, # 31 Exhibit 30, # 32 Exhibit 31)(Radine, Michael) (Entered: 02/21/2019)
2019-03-0629LETTER MOTION for Extension of Time of Defendant's deadline to file its reply brief addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Andrew E. Krause dated March 6, 2019. Document filed by United States Central Command.(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 03/06/2019)
2019-03-0730ORDER granting 29 LETTER MOTION for Extension of Time of Defendant's deadline to file its reply brief addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Andrew E. Krause dated March 6, 2019. Document filed by United States Central Command. Application GRANTED. The parties shall adhere to the briefing schedule indicated below. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 3/7/2019) (rjm) (Entered: 03/07/2019)
2019-03-07Set/Reset Deadlines: Replies due by 4/4/2019. (rjm) (Entered: 03/07/2019)
2019-03-07Set/Reset Deadlines: Responses due by 3/21/2019. (rjm) (Entered: 03/07/2019)
2019-03-2031REPLY MEMORANDUM OF LAW in Support re: 21 MOTION for Summary Judgment . and in opposition to Plaintiff's cross-motion for summary judgment [Dkt. No. 26] . Document filed by United States Central Command. (Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 03/20/2019)
2019-03-2032DECLARATION of Major General Michael Erik Kurilla in Support re: 21 MOTION for Summary Judgment .. Document filed by United States Central Command. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2)(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 03/20/2019)
2019-03-2733LETTER addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Andrew E. Krause dated March 27, 2019 re: notification regarding decision in Osen LLC v. United States Central Command, 17 Civ. 4457 (KPF). Document filed by United States Central Command.(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 03/27/2019)
2019-04-0434REPLY MEMORANDUM OF LAW in Support re: 26 CROSS MOTION for Summary Judgment . . Document filed by Osen LLC. (Radine, Michael) (Entered: 04/04/2019)
2019-07-0535MOTION for William A. Friedman to Withdraw as Attorney . Document filed by Osen LLC. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of William A. Friedman)(Friedman, William) (Entered: 07/05/2019)
2019-07-0836MEMO ENDORSEMENT granting 35 Motion to Withdraw as Attorney. ENDORSEMENT: Application GRANTED. The Clerk of Court is respectfully directed to terminate William A. Friedman as counsel of record for plaintiff. Attorney William Adam Friedman terminated (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 7/8/2019) (cf) (Entered: 07/08/2019)
2019-09-3037OPINION AND ORDER: For the reasons set forth above, defendant's motion (Dkt. No. 21) is GRANTED IN PART, and plaintiff's motion (Dkt. No. 26) is DENIED. However, the Court will not enter judgment at this time, in order to afford the parties an opportunity to consider whether to further litigate the issues left open above. See Morales v. Quintel Entmt, Inc., 249 F.3d 115, 121 (2d Cir. 2001) ("[E]ven when both parties move for summary judgment, asserting the absence of any genuine issues of material fact, a court need not enter judgment for either party."). The Court will conduct a status conference on October 24, 2019, at 10:30 a.m., in Courtroom 20A, 500 Pearl Street, New York, New York. No later than October 17, 2019, the parties shall submit a joint letter (1) addressing any outstanding redactions under Exemption 6 that Osen contends to be of places, organizations, or other non-persons, see Pl. Reply Mem. at 4; and (2)proposing a schedule for Osen to provide CENTCOM a list of names and/or photographs itbelieves are identical to a prior CENTCOM release, and for CENTCOM to respond. If the parties have resolved the issues left outstanding in this Opinion and Order (or believe they will be able to without the Court's involvement), they may request that the conference be held telephonically. The Clerk of Court is directed to terminate the motions at Dkt. Nos. 21 and 26. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 9/30/2019) (jca) (Entered: 09/30/2019)
2019-09-30Set/Reset Hearings: Status Conference set for 10/24/2019 at 10:30 AM in Courtroom 20A, 500 Pearl Street, New York, NY 10007 before Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses. (jca) (Entered: 09/30/2019)
2019-10-1738JOINT LETTER addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Andrew E. Krause and Michael J. Radine dated October 17, 2019 re: status report regarding two remaining issues. Document filed by United States Central Command.(Krause, Andrew) (Entered: 10/17/2019)
2019-10-1839MEMO ENDORSEMENT on re: 38 Letter filed by United States Central Command. ENDORSEMENT: The parties are directed to exchange documents according to the dates agreed upon below. The conference scheduled for October 24, 2019, is ADJOURNED to December 20, 2019, at 10:00 a.m., in Courtroom 20A. SO ORDERED. (Status Conference set for 12/20/2019 at 10:00 AM before Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses.) (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 10/18/2019) (rro) (Entered: 10/18/2019)
2019-12-1740JOINT LETTER addressed to Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses from Michael J. Radine and Andrew E. Krause dated December 17, 2019 re: status update regarding remaining issues (and proposing adjourning Dec. 20, 2019 conference pending anticipated settlement). Document filed by Osen LLC.(Radine, Michael) (Entered: 12/17/2019)
2019-12-1741ORDER: The parties having informed the Court that they have settled their dispute, it is hereby ORDERED that this action is DISMISSED without costs and without prejudice to the parties' right, within forty-five days of the date of this Order, (a) to submit their own Stipulation of Settlement and Dismissal for the Court to so order, or (b) to reopen if the settlement has not been completed. To be clear, any application to reopen must be filed within forty-five days of this Order. Late-filed applications to reopen may be denied solely on that basis. This Order shall be deemed a final discontinuance of the action with prejudice in the event that no party requests restoration of the case to the active calendar within such 45-day period. Any pending motions are moot. All filing deadlines and conference dates are adjourned sine die. The Clerk of Court is directed to close the case. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Magistrate Judge Barbara C. Moses on 12/17/2019) (jca) (Entered: 12/17/2019)
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