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Judicial Watch • JW v State Israel BDS complaint 01651

JW v State Israel BDS complaint 01651

JW v State Israel BDS complaint 01651

Page 1: JW v State Israel BDS complaint 01651

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Number of Pages:4

Date Created:August 14, 2017

Date Uploaded to the Library:August 15, 2017

Tags:BDS, 01651, trade, israel, complaint, responsive, defendant, filed, plaintiff, request, document, records, American, FOIA, department, office, Washington


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Case 1:17-cv-01651 Document Filed 08/15/17 Page THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT COLUMBIA
JUDICIAL WATCH, INC.,
425 Third Street SW, Suite 800
Washington, 20024,
Plaintiff,
U.S. DEPARTMENT STATE
The Executive Office
Office the Legal Adviser, Suite 5.600
600 19th Street
Washington, 20522,
Defendant.
____________________________________)
Civil Action No.
COMPLAINT
Plaintiff Judicial Watch, Inc. brings this action against Defendant U.S. Department
State 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 organization
incorporated under the laws the District Columbia and headquartered 425 Third Street
SW, Suite 800, Washington, 20024. Plaintiff seeks promote transparency, accountability,
and integrity government and fidelity the rule law. part its mission, Plaintiff
Case 1:17-cv-01651 Document Filed 08/15/17 Page
regularly requests records from federal agencies pursuant FOIA. Plaintiff analyzes the
responses and disseminates its findings and the requested records the American public
inform them about what their government to.
Defendant U.S. Department State agency the United States
Government. Defendant has possession, custody, and control records which Plaintiff seeks
access. Defendant headquartered 600 19th Street NW, Washington, 20522.
STATEMENT FACTS June 20, 2017, Plaintiff submitted FOIA request the U.S. Department
State DoS State seeking the following:
All emails which mention protections for Israel the Trade Facilitation and
Trade Enforcement Act 2015, and were sent between DoS and any the
following groups: Act Now Stop War and End Racism, Al-Awda, the
Council American-Islamic Relations, Friends Sabeel-North America,
Americans Knew, the International Solidarity Movement, Jewish Voice for
Peace, the Muslim American Society, Students for Justice Palestine, the Campaign End the Israeli Occupation (the BDS Groups
All internal DoS emails discussing the efforts the BDS Groups limit
protections for Israel the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act
2015.
The timeframe the request was identified February 2015 through February 24, 2016.
According email records, the request was received State June 20, 2017. letter dated July 10, 2017, State confirmed that received the request June
20, 2017 and assigned the request Tracking Number F-2017-12938. the date this Complaint, Defendant has failed to: (i) produce the
requested records demonstrate that the requested records are lawfully exempt from
production; (ii) notify Plaintiff the scope any responsive records Defendant intends
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Case 1:17-cv-01651 Document Filed 08/15/17 Page
produce withhold and the reasons for any withholdings; (iii) inform Plaintiff that may
appeal any adequately specific, adverse determination.
COUNT
Violation FOIA, U.S.C. 552
Plaintiff realleges paragraphs through fully stated herein.
10.
Plaintiff being irreparably harmed reason Defendant violation FOIA,
and Plaintiff will continue irreparably harmed unless Defendant compelled comply
with FOIA.
11. trigger FOIA administrative exhaustion requirement, Defendant was
required determine whether comply with Plaintiff request August 2017 the latest. minimum, Defendant was required to: (i) gather and review the requested documents; (ii)
determine and communicate Plaintiff the scope any responsive records Defendant intended produce withhold and the reasons for any withholdings; (iii) inform Plaintiff that may
appeal any adequately specific, adverse determination; and (iv) make the records available
promptly thereafter. See, e.g., Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics Washington Federal
Election Commission, 711 F.3d 180, 188-89 (D.C. Cir. 2013).
12.
Because Defendant failed determine whether fully comply with Plaintiff
request within the time period required FOIA, Plaintiff deemed have exhausted its
administrative appeal remedies. U.S.C. 552(a)(6)(C)(i).
WHEREFORE, Plaintiff respectfully requests that the Court: (1) order Defendant
conduct searches 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 non-
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Case 1:17-cv-01651 Document Filed 08/15/17 Page
exempt records 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.
Dated: August 15, 2017
Respectfully submitted, Chris Fedeli
Chris Fedeli
D.C. Bar No. 472919
JUDICIAL WATCH, INC.
425 Third Street SW, Suite 800
Washington, 20024
(202) 646-5172
Counsel for Plaintiff
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