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Case TitlePROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC.
DistrictDistrict of Columbia
CityWashington, DC
Case Number1:2019cv02781
Date Filed2019-09-17
Date ClosedOpen
JudgeJudge Randolph D. Moss
PlaintiffPROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC.
PlaintiffNEGAR MORTAZAVI
PlaintiffNARGES BAJOGHLI
PlaintiffMOHAMMAD ALI SHABANI
PlaintiffESFANDYAR BATMANGHELIDJ
PlaintiffTRITA PARSI
Case DescriptionThe Protect Democracy Project and five journalists or researchers who specialized in Iran, submitted a FOIA request to the Department of State for records concerning contacts between the agency pertaining to the E-Collaborative for Civic Education, Tavaana, and the Iran Disinformation Project sent to a group of outside parties and named Twitter accounts. PDP also requested expedited processing and a fee waiver. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request and denied PDP's request for expedited processing. After hearing nothing further from the agency, PDP filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Adequacy - Search, Litigation - Vaughn index, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantU.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Complaint attachment 2
Complaint attachment 3
Complaint attachment 4
Complaint attachment 5
Complaint attachment 6
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2019-09-171COMPLAINT against U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE ( Filing fee $ 400 receipt number 0090-6381822) filed by PROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC.. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Group Request, # 2 Exhibit Mortazavi Request, # 3 Exhibit Group Acknowledgment, # 4 Exhibit Mortazavi Acknowledgment, # 5 Civil Cover Sheet, # 6 Summons)(Abate, Michael) (Entered: 09/17/2019)
2019-09-172LCvR 26.1 CERTIFICATE OF DISCLOSURE of Corporate Affiliations and Financial Interests by PROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC. (Abate, Michael) (Entered: 09/17/2019)
2019-09-19Case Assigned to Judge Randolph D. Moss. (zeg) (Entered: 09/19/2019)
2019-09-193SUMMONS (1) Issued Electronically as to U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE. (Attachment: # 1 Notice and Consent)(zeg) (Entered: 09/19/2019)
2019-09-194STANDING ORDER: The parties are hereby ORDERED to comply with the directives set forth in the attached Standing Order. See document for details. Signed by Judge Randolph D. Moss on 9/19/19. (lcrdm1, ) (Entered: 09/19/2019)
2019-10-155ENTERED IN ERROR. . . . .REQUEST FOR SUMMONS TO ISSUE with revised address filed by NEGAR MORTAZAVI, PROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC., ESFANDYAR BATMANGHELIDJ, MOHAMMAD ALI SHABANI, NARGES BAJOGHLI, TRITA PARSI.(Abate, Michael) Modified on 10/16/2019 (ztd). (Entered: 10/15/2019)
2019-10-16NOTICE OF ERROR re 5 Request for Summons to Issue; emailed to mabate@kplouisville.com, cc'd 1 associated attorneys -- The PDF file you docketed contained errors: 1. Please refile document, 2. The Executive Office is not listed as a party. If they are being served on behalf of the defendant (ztd, ) (Entered: 10/16/2019)
2019-11-016NOTICE of Appearance by Diana Viggiano Valdivia on behalf of U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE (Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 11/01/2019)
2019-11-017ANSWER to Complaint by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE.(Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 11/01/2019)
2019-11-04MINUTE ORDER: It is ORDERED that, on or before November 25, 2019, the parties shall confer and file a joint status report addressing (1) any documents still to be produced pursuant to FOIA; (2) an anticipated schedule for processing and producing any such documents, and (3) any substantive areas of disagreement between the parties. It is FURTHER ORDERED that the parties shall appear for an Initial Scheduling Conference on December 2, 2019, at 10:30 a.m., in Courtroom 21. Signed by Judge Randolph D. Moss on 11/4/19. (lcrdm1) Modified on 11/4/2019 to edit hearing type (kt). (Entered: 11/04/2019)
2019-11-258Joint STATUS REPORT by NARGES BAJOGHLI, ESFANDYAR BATMANGHELIDJ, NEGAR MORTAZAVI, TRITA PARSI, PROTECT DEMOCRACY PROJECT, INC., MOHAMMAD ALI SHABANI. (Abate, Michael) (Entered: 11/25/2019)
2019-12-02Minute Entry for proceedings held before Judge Randolph D. Moss: Initial Scheduling Conference held on 12/2/2019. Defendant shall complete its searches by 12/13/2019; Defendant shall provide Plaintiff with potential responsive documents and pages by 12/18/2019, with first interim production by 1/17/2020; Defendant shall process no fewer than 600 pages of records each month. The parties shall file joint status reports on the third Friday of each month, commencing on 1/17/2020. (Court Reporter: Nancy Meyer.) (kt) (Entered: 12/02/2019)
2020-01-23MINUTE ORDER: The parties are hereby ORDERED to comply with the terms of the Court's revised standing order, which is available on the Court's website. Click for details. Signed by Judge Randolph D. Moss on 1/23/20. (lcrdm1) (Entered: 01/23/2020)
2020-01-239Joint MOTION for Extension of Time to File Joint Status Report, Nunc Pro Tunc by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 01/23/2020)
2020-01-2310Joint STATUS REPORT by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE. (Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 01/23/2020)
2020-01-24MINUTE ORDER: Upon consideration of the parties' joint motion for extension of time, nunc pro tunc, Dkt. 9 , it is hereby ORDERED that the motion is GRANTED. It is further ORDERED that the parties' January 17, 2020 joint status report shall be due on or before January 23, 2020. Signed by Judge Randolph D. Moss on 1/24/20. (lcrdm1) (Entered: 01/24/2020)
2020-02-2111Joint STATUS REPORT by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE. (Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 02/21/2020)
2020-03-2012Joint STATUS REPORT by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE. (Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 03/20/2020)
2020-03-3013Unopposed MOTION to Stay and Extend the Processing, Production, and Reporting Deadlines in Light of the COVID-19 Pandemics Effect on Federal Government Operations by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Eric Stein, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Valdivia, Diana). Added MOTION for Extension of Time to on 4/1/2020 (znmw). (Entered: 03/30/2020)
2020-03-31MINUTE ORDER: Upon consideration of Defendant's unopposed motion to stay proceedings, Dkt. 13 , it is hereby ORDERED that the motion is GRANTED. It is further ORDERED that the processing and production deadlines as well as the deadlines for filing the parties' joint status reports in this case shall be stayed until May 29, 2020. It is further ORDERED that the parties shall file a joint status report on or before May 29, 2020, informing the Court of the parties views on a proposed schedule for the resumption of Defendant's processing and production of records. Signed by Judge Randolph D. Moss on 3/31/2020. (lcrdm1) (Entered: 03/31/2020)
2020-04-01Case STAYED. (kt) (Entered: 04/01/2020)
2020-05-2914Joint STATUS REPORT by U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE. (Valdivia, Diana) (Entered: 05/29/2020)
2020-05-30MINUTE ORDER: Upon consideration of the parties' joint status report, Dkt. 14 , it is hereby ORDERED that the parties shall file a further joint status report on or before July 9, 2020 to propose a processing and production schedule going forward in this matter. Signed by Judge Randolph D. Moss on 5/30/2020. (lcrdm1) (Entered: 05/30/2020)
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