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JW v DOJ

JW v DOJ

Page 1: JW v DOJ

Category:General

Number of Pages:5

Date Created:March 27, 2013

Date Uploaded to the Library:February 20, 2014

Tags:filed, document, DOJ


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  • demand_answers

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THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 
FOR THE DISTRICT COLUMBIA 

JUDICIAL WATCH, INC., 
425 Third Street, S.W., Suite 800 
Washington,  20024,  
Plaintiff,  Civil Action No.  

U.S. DEPARTMENT JUSTICE, 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington, 20530-0001, 
Defendant. 

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.  139l(e). 

PARTIES Plaintiff non-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 its public interest mission, Plaintiff regularly requests access the public records federal, state, and local 
government agencies, entities, and offices, and disseminates its findings the public. Defendant agency the U.S. Government and headquartered 950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW, Washington, 20530-0001. Defendant has possession, custody, and control records which Plaintiff seeks access. 

STATEMENT FACTS May 24, 2012, Plaintiff sent FOIA request the Civil Rights Division, 
component Defendant, certified mail, return receipt requested, seeking access the 
following: 	
Any and all records communications between any official employee the Department Justice's Civil Rights Division and any officer, employee representative New England United for Justice (NEU4J), the National Association for the Advancement Colored People (NAACP), and/or Demos, regarding, concerning, related the implementation and enforcement the National Voter Registration Act the Commonwealth Massachusetts. 	
Any and all records communications between any official the Department Justice and Ms. Maude Hurd, the President New England United for Justice. 

The time frame the request was identified being "January 2011 through the present," 
meaning through May 24, 2012. letter dated May 29, 2012, the Civil Rights Division acknowledged receiving 
Plaintiffs FOIA request May 24, 2012 and assigned the request tracking number 12-00323-F. Defendant was required determine whether comply with Plaintiff's request 
within days, excepting Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays, pursuant U.S.C.  
552(a)(6)(A). Pursuant this same provision, Defendant also was required notify Plaintiff 
immediately the determination, the reasons therefor, and the right appeal any adverse 
determination the head the agency. Excluding intervening weekends and holidays, 
Defendant was required make its determination and provide Plaintiff with the requisite 
notifications June 21, 2013, the latest. 

II. 
2012 August 20, 2012, Plaintiff sent FOIA request the Civil Rights Division 
certified mail, return receipt requested, seeking access the following: 	Any and all records communications between any official employee the Department Justice's Civil Rights Division and any officer, employee representative New England United for Justice (NEU4J), Demos, and/or Project Vote regarding, concerning, related voter registration Massachusetts. 
The time frame the request was identified being "January 2011 through the present," 
meaning through August 10, 2012. letter dated August 21, 2012, the Civil Rights Division acknowledged receiving 
Plaintiffs FOIA request August 21, 2012 and assigned the request tracking number 
12-00477-F. 
10. 	Defendant was required determine whether comply with Plaintiff's request 
within days, excepting Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays, pursuant U.S.C.  552(a)(6)(A). Pursuant this same provision, Defendant also was required notify Plaintiff 
immediately the determination, the reasons therefor, and the right appeal any adverse 
determination the head the agency. Excluding intervening weekends and holidays, 
Defendant was required make its determination and provide Plaintiff with the requisite 
notifications September 19, 2013, the latest. 

III. 
11. the date this Complaint, Defendant has failed make determination 
about whether will comply with Plaintiffs requests, notify Plaintiff any determination, 
notify Plaintiff his right appeal any adverse determination the head the agency. Nor has 
Defendant produced any records responsive the requests, indicated when any responsive records 
will produced, demonstrated that responsive records are exempt from production. 
12. Because Defendant failed comply with the time limit set forth U.S.C.  
552(a)(6)(A), Plaintiff deemed have exhausted any and all administrative remedies with 
respect its FOIA requests, pursuant U.S.C.  552(a)(6)(C). 

COUNTl (Violation ofFOIA, U.S.C.  552) 
13. 
Plaintiff realleges paragraphs through fully stated herein. 

14. 
Defendant unlawfully withholding records requested Plaintiff pursuant u.s.c.  552. 

15. Plaintiff being irreparably harmed reason Defendant's unlawful withholding requested 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 responsive records Plaintiffs FOIA requests and demonstrate 
that employed search methods reasonably likely lead the discovery records responsive 
the requests; (2) order Defendant produce, date certain, any and all non-exempt records 
responsive Plaintiffs FOIA requests and Vaughn index any responsive records withheld 
under claim exemption; (3) enjoin Defendant from continuing withhold any and all 
non-exempt records responsive Plaintiff's FOIA requests; (4) grant Plaintiff award attorneys' fees and other Litigation costs reasonably inculTed this action pursuant U.S.C.  552(a)(4)(E); and (5) grant Plaintiff such other relief the Cou1t deems just and proper. 
Dated: March 27, 2013 Respectfully submitted, 
JUDICIAL WATCH, INC. 
Isl Paul Orfanedes 
D.C. Bar No. 429716 
425 Third Street, S.W., Suite 800 Washington, 20024 
(202) 646-5172 
Attorneys/or Plaintiff