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Judicial Watch • Judicial Watch v. US Department of State (Case 1:13-cv-00949)

Judicial Watch v. US Department of State (Case 1:13-cv-00949)

Judicial Watch v. US Department of State (Case 1:13-cv-00949)

Page 1: Judicial Watch v. US Department of State (Case 1:13-cv-00949)

Category:Lawsuit

Number of Pages:5

Date Created:June 21, 2013

Date Uploaded to the Library:August 15, 2013

Tags:EPA, ICE, CIA


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  • demand_answers

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Case 1:13-cv-00949 Document Filed 06/21/13 Page THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT COLUMBIA
JUDICIAL WATCH, INC.,
425 Third Street, SW, Suite 800
Washington, D.C. 20024,
Plaintiff,
UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT JUSTICE,
950 Pennsylvania Ave,
Washington, D.C. 20530-0001,
Defendant.
___________________________________
Civil Action No.
COMPLAINT
Plaintiff Judicial Watch, Inc. brings this action against Defendant United States
Department Justice compel compliance with the Freedom Information Act, U.S.C. 
552 FOIA grounds therefor, Plaintiff alleges follows:
JURISDICTION AND VENUE
The Court has jurisdiction over this action pursuant U.S.C. 552 (a)(4)(B)
and U.S.C. 1331.
Venue proper this district pursuant U.S.C. 1391(e).
PARTIES
Plaintiff Judicial Watch, Inc. not-for-profit, educational foundation organized
under the laws the District Columbia and having its principal place business 425 Third
Street, S.W., Suite 800, Washington, 20024. Plaintiff seeks promote integrity,
transparency, and accountability government and fidelity the rule law. furtherance
Case 1:13-cv-00949 Document Filed 06/21/13 Page
its public interest mission, Judicial Watch regularly requests access public records federal,
state, and local government agencies and officials and disseminates its findings the public.
Defendant United States Department Justice agency the United States
Government and headquartered United States Department Justice, 950 Pennsylvania Ave,
NW, Washington, 20530-0001. Defendant has possession, custody, and control records
which Plaintiff seeks access.
STATEMENT FACTS August 27, 2012, Plaintiff submitted FOIA request the Office
Information Policy OIP within Defendant U.S. Department Justice seeking records
relating annual legal conference. Specifically, Plaintiff sought access All records
concerning, referring, relating the National LGBT Bar Association 2012 Lavender Law
Conference Career Fair. letter dated September 26, 2012, OIP acknowledged receiving Plaintiff
FOIA request August 27, 2012 and asserted that the request fell within the unusual
circumstances provision U.S.C. 552(a)(6)(B)(i)-(iii). Despite invoking the unusual
circumstance provision, the letter failed provide date which determination expected dispatched, required the provision.
After receiving further communication from OIP about the request, Plaintiff
sent email the agency March 18, 2013 asking that responsive records provided
without further delay. telephone conversation with representative OIP later that same
day, Plaintiff was advised that search for responsive records the Office the Attorney
General was still ongoing.
Case 1:13-cv-00949 Document Filed 06/21/13 Page
Plaintiff subsequently received letter from OIP dated March 19, 2013, made
behalf the Office the Attorney General, asserting that the search the Office the
Attorney General had been completed and that OIP was reviewing the records that had been
located. The letter also asserted that, because the records contain information interest other
offices, OIP could respond only after consulting with those offices and that would respond
Plaintiff again once these consultations had been completed. The letter also advised Plaintiff
that, Plaintiff was not satisfied with OIP response behalf the Office the Attorney
General, Plaintiff had the right take administrative appeal. reference was made the
status any searches for responsive records other agency offices.
Plaintiff filed administrative appeal March 22, 2013. OIP subsequently sent
Plaintiff undated letter acknowledging receipt Plaintiff administrative appeal March
22, 2013. date, Plaintiff has received further communication from the agency regarding
the status the appeal.
10.
Pursuant U.S.C. 552(a)(6)(A)(i), OIP was required determine whether
comply with Plaintiff request within twenty (20) working days after receipt the request.
Pursuant this same provision, OIP also was required notify Plaintiff immediately its
determination, the reasons therefor, and the right appeal any adverse determination. Pursuant U.S.C. 552(a)(6)(A)(ii), OIP was required make determination with respect
Plaintiff administrative appeal within twenty (20) working days after receipt the appeal.
11. the date this Complaint, OIP has failed to: (i) determine whether
comply with Plaintiff request; (ii) notify Plaintiff any such determination the reasons
therefor; (iii) produce the requested record otherwise demonstrate that the requested records
Case 1:13-cv-00949 Document Filed 06/21/13 Page
are exempt from production. Also the date this Complaint, OIP has failed make
determination with respect Plaintiff administrative appeal.
12.
Because OIP has failed comply with the time limits set forth U.S.C. 
522(a)(6)(A), Plaintiff deemed have exhausted any and all administrative remedies with
respect its request, pursuant U.S.C. 552(a)(6)(C).
COUNT
(Violation FOIA, U.S.C. 552)
13.
Plaintiff realleges paragraphs through fully stated herein.
14.
Defendant unlawfully withholding public records requested Plaintiff
pursuant U.S.C. 552.
15.
Plaintiff being irreparably harmed reason Defendant unlawful
withholding the requested public records, and Plaintiff will continue irreparably harmed
unless Defendant compelled conform its conduct the requirements the law.
WHEREFORE, Plaintiff respectfully requests that the Court: (1) order Defendant
conduct search for any and all records responsive Plaintiff FOIA request and demonstrate
that employed search methods reasonably likely lead the discovery records responsive Plaintiff FOIA request; (2) order Defendant produce, date certain, any and all nonexempt records responsive Plaintiff FOIA request and Vaughn index any responsive
records withheld under claim exemption; (3) enjoin Defendant from continuing withhold
any and all non-exempt records responsive Plaintiff FOIA request; (4) grant Plaintiff
award attorneys fees and other litigation costs reasonably incurred this action pursuant
U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(E); and (5) grant Plaintiff such other relief the Court deems just and
proper.
Case 1:13-cv-00949 Document Filed 06/21/13 Page
Dated: June 21, 2013
Respectfully Submitted,
JUDICIAL WATCH, INC.
/S/ Paul Orfanedes
D.C. Bar No. 429716
425 Third Street, S.W., Suite 800
Washington, 20024
(202) 646-5172
Attorneys for Plaintiff