Skip to content

Case Detail

[Subscribe to updates]
Case TitleSANDERS v. FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
DistrictDistrict of Columbia
CityWashington, DC
Case Number1:2020cv03672
Date Filed2020-12-14
Date Closed2022-03-25
JudgeJudge Amy Berman Jackson
PlaintiffZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS
Case DescriptionZachary Ellis Sanders submitted a FOIA request to the FBI for records concerning Project Habitance, a project of the United Kingdom's National Crime Agency to investigate hidden services given to sex traffickers. The agency acknowledged receipt of the request but after hearing nothing from the agency, Sanders filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Adequacy - Search, Litigation - Vaughn index, Fees, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantFEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Complaint attachment 2
Complaint attachment 3
Complaint attachment 4
Complaint attachment 5
Complaint attachment 6
Opinion/Order [28]
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2020-12-141COMPLAINT against FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION ( Filing fee $ 402 receipt number BDCDC-7957168) filed by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A, # 2 Exhibit B, # 3 Civil Cover Sheet, # 4 Summons FBI, # 5 Summons Attorney General, # 6 Summons U.S. Attorney)(Anderson, Norman) (Entered: 12/14/2020)
2020-12-15NOTICE OF ERROR re 1 Complaint; emailed to nanderson@kaiserdillon.com, cc'd 0 associated attorneys -- The PDF file you docketed contained errors: 1. Incorrect coversheet. Please use the cover sheet at https://www.dcd.uscourts.gov/new-case-forms & file using the event Civil Cover Sheet. (adh, ) (Entered: 12/15/2020)
2020-12-152CIVIL COVER SHEET by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS filed by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS.(Anderson, Norman) (Main Document 2 replaced on 12/16/2020) (rj). Modified on 12/16/2020 to flatten pdf (rj). (Entered: 12/15/2020)
2020-12-15Case Assigned to Judge Amy Berman Jackson. (adh, ) (Entered: 12/15/2020)
2020-12-163SUMMONS (3) Issued Electronically as to FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION, U.S. Attorney and U.S. Attorney General (Attachment: # 1 Notice and Consent)(adh, ) (Entered: 12/16/2020)
2021-01-074RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed as to the United States Attorney. Date of Service Upon United States Attorney on 1/4/2021. Answer due for ALL FEDERAL DEFENDANTS by 2/3/2021. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration, # 2 Exhibit)(Anderson, Norman) (Entered: 01/07/2021)
2021-01-075RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed on United States Attorney General. Date of Service Upon United States Attorney General 1/4/2021. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration, # 2 Exhibit)(Anderson, Norman) (Entered: 01/07/2021)
2021-01-076RETURN OF SERVICE/AFFIDAVIT of Summons and Complaint Executed. FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION served on 1/4/2021 (Attachments: # 1 Declaration, # 2 Exhibit)(Anderson, Norman) (Entered: 01/07/2021)
2021-01-207NOTICE of Appearance by Jade Chong-Smith on behalf of All Plaintiffs (Chong-Smith, Jade) (Main Document 7 replaced on 1/20/2021) (zjf). (Entered: 01/20/2021)
2021-01-208MOTION Partially Seal Complaint and Exhibit A re 1 Complaint, by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order, # 2 Exhibit 1, # 3 Exhibit 2, # 4 Exhibit 3)(Anderson, Norman) Modified event on 1/22/2021 (znmw). (Entered: 01/20/2021)
2021-01-22MINUTE ORDER. Upon consideration of plaintiff's 8 Motion to Partially Seal Complaint and Exhibit A, it is ORDERED that the motion is GRANTED. It is FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk is directed to place under seal the Complaint 1 and Exhibit A thereto [1-1]. It is FURTHER ORDERED that the Clerk is directed to file on the public docket the redacted version of plaintiff's Complaint [8-2] and Exhibit A thereto [8-3]. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 1/22/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 01/22/2021)
2021-01-229REDACTED COMPLAINT against FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION filed by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A (Redacted))(zjf) (Entered: 01/25/2021)
2021-02-0310ANSWER to Complaint by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION.(Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 02/03/2021)
2021-02-0411ORDER. Before the Court in this FOIA case are a complaint and an answer. The requirements of Local Civil Rule 16.3 and Rule 26(f) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure appear to be inapplicable. Defendant shall file a dispositive motion or, in the alternative, a report setting forth the schedule for the completion of its production of documents to plaintiff on or before March 4, 2021. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 2/4/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 02/04/2021)
2021-02-2312MOTION for Extension of Time to File Dispositive Motion by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Michael G. Seidel, # 2 Text of Proposed Order)(Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 02/23/2021)
2021-02-2513SEALED MOTION FOR LEAVE TO FILE DOCUMENT UNDER SEAL filed by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS (This document is SEALED and only available to authorized persons.) (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit Under seal version of opposition)(Chong-Smith, Jade) (Entered: 02/25/2021)
2021-02-2514Memorandum in opposition to re: 12 MOTION for Extension of Time to File Dispositive Motion filed by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Chong-Smith, Jade) Modified on 2/26/2021 (zjth). (Entered: 02/25/2021)
2021-02-25MINUTE ORDER granting plaintiff's 13 sealed motion for leave to file document under seal. The Clerk of Court is direct to file [13-1] under seal. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 2/25/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 02/25/2021)
2021-02-25MINUTE ORDER. After consideration of the 12 motion and the 14 opposition, defendant's 12 motion for extension of time will be granted. There are a lot of FOIA cases pending in this courthouse. This one has not been pending for very long, the length of the requested extension is reasonable, and plaintiff has not specified any ways in which he or the public will be prejudiced by the additional time. Plaintiff points out that the declaration attached to the motion, which talks about COVID-related reductions in staffing at the FBI and the resulting delays in searching for and processing records, does not seem to have much to do with the time it would take counsel to brief the legality of a Glomar response. But the motion asserts that staff members within the Records Information Dissemination Section will be assisting in the preparation of supporting materials, and there may well be declarations that are required. So the fact of their reduced schedule is relevant. Finally, plaintiff suggests that the Court should deny the extension based on his view of the merits of defendant's Glomar response, but without the benefit of the full briefing we are trying to schedule, the Court cannot reach any conclusion about that. This is not a motion for preliminary injunctive relief or a motion for leave to amend a pleading where some advance consideration of the merits is warranted; the likely strength of the pleading for which an extension is sought is not an appropriate factor to consider when ruling on a simply motion for extra time. It is ORDERED that defendant's dispositive motion must be filed by April 5, 2021. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 2/25/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 02/25/2021)
2021-03-0216NOTICE of Appearance by Mark Steven Zaid on behalf of ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS (Zaid, Mark) (Entered: 03/02/2021)
2021-04-0517MOTION for Leave to Provide Unredacted Declaration for Ex Parte, In Camera Review by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 04/05/2021)
2021-04-0518MOTION for Summary Judgment by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. (Attachments: # 1 Memorandum in Support, # 2 Defendant's Statement of Undisputed Material Facts, # 3 Declaration of Joseph E. Bender, Jr., # 4 Text of Proposed Order)(Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 04/05/2021)
2021-04-0519ERRATA by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION re 18 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. (Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 04/05/2021)
2021-04-06MINUTE ORDER granting defendant's 17 motion. It is ORDERED that defendant provide the Court with the unredacted version of the Bender declaration [18-3] for ex parte, in camera review. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 4/6/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 04/06/2021)
2021-04-0920NOTICE of In Camera Submission by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION (Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 04/09/2021)
2021-04-1921Memorandum in opposition to re 18 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1 - EDVA Public Decision, # 2 Declaration Rule 56(f) Declaration, # 3 Statement of Facts Rule 7(h) Statement, # 4 Text of Proposed Order)(Zaid, Mark) (Entered: 04/19/2021)
2021-04-2222MOTION for Extension of Time to File Reply Brief by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 04/22/2021)
2021-04-26MINUTE ORDER granting defendant's 22 motion for extension of time. It is ORDERED that defendant's reply is due by May 5, 2021. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 4/26/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 04/26/2021)
2021-05-0523REPLY to opposition to motion re 18 MOTION for Summary Judgment filed by FEDERAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION. (Attachments: # 1 Declaration of Michael G. Seidel)(Tilghman, Michael) (Entered: 05/05/2021)
2021-05-0724NOTICE of Appearance by Bradley Prescott Moss on behalf of ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS (Moss, Bradley) (Entered: 05/07/2021)
2021-06-0725MOTION for Leave to Appear In Camera In Chambers by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Zaid, Mark) (Entered: 06/07/2021)
2021-06-08MINUTE ORDER. It is ORDERED that plaintiff's 25 motion for leave to appear is DENIED WITHOUT PREJUDICE; the government is permitted to submit ex parte declarations under certain circumstances in FOIA cases. If the Court determines that the showing made by the government in this case is inadequate, or that it is necessary or appropriate to reveal the information to plaintiff, it will determine what procedure to follow at that time. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 6/8/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 06/08/2021)
2021-06-0826MOTION for Reconsideration re Order on Motion for Leave to Appear, by ZACKARY ELLIS SANDERS. (Attachments: # 1 Text of Proposed Order)(Zaid, Mark) (Entered: 06/08/2021)
2021-06-15MINUTE ORDER denying plaintiff's 26 motion for reconsideration. The Court does not conduct off the record "chamber meetings." If plaintiff has information to convey to the Court that should not be publicly revealed, plaintiff may review Local Rule of Civil Procedure 5.1(h) for the procedure governing motions for leave to file under seal. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 6/15/21. (lcabj2) (Entered: 06/15/2021)
2022-03-2527ORDER. For the reasons stated in the accompanying Memorandum Opinion, defendant's motion for summary judgment 18 is GRANTED. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 03/25/2022. (lcabj2) (Entered: 03/25/2022)
2022-03-2528MEMORANDUM OPINION. Signed by Judge Amy Berman Jackson on 03/25/2022. (lcabj2) (Entered: 03/25/2022)
Hide Docket Events
by FOIA Project Staff
Skip to toolbar