JW v State Clinton motion to compel 01363
Number of Pages:9
Date Created:November 3, 2016
Date Uploaded to the Library:November 03, 2016
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Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT COLUMBIA JUDICIAL WATCH, INC., Plaintiff, U.S. DEPARTMENT STATE, Defendant. Civil Action No. 13-cv-1363 (EGS) PLAINTIFF MOTION COMPEL FORMER SECRETARY STATE HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON ANSWER INTERROGATORIES Plaintiff Judicial Watch, Inc., counsel and pursuant Rules and the Federal Rules Civil Procedure, respectfully moves compel former Secretary State Hillary Rodham Clinton answer the three interrogatories she refuses answer. Secretary Clinton opposes this motion; the State Department reserves its right oppose upon reviewing the motion. grounds therefor, Plaintiff states follows: STATEMENT POINTS AND AUTHORITIES Introduction. Former Secretary State Hillary Rodham Clinton refuses answer three interrogatories. She also fails justify her refusal with nothing more than bare-bone objections each. Because she has not and cannot demonstrate that her refusal answer the interrogatories proper, Secretary Clinton should required answer them promptly. II. Background. The Court granted Plaintiff request seek discovery from Secretary Clinton. Specifically, the Court authorized Plaintiff propound questions that are relevant Secretary Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Clinton unique firsthand knowledge the creation and operation clintonemail.com for State Department business, well the State Department approach and practice for processing FOIA requests that potentially implicated former Secretary Clinton and Ms. Abedin emails and State processing the FOIA request that the subject this action. Memorandum Opinion (Docket No. 124) (internal citation omitted). Plaintiff subsequently propounded interrogatories Secretary Clinton. October 13, 2016, Secretary Clinton responded them. doing so, she refused answer Interrogatories 14, and 24. Clinton Response (Docket No. 137-1). Secretary Clinton refuses answer Interrogatory because she believes outside the scope permitted discovery. Id. 4-5. She refuses answer Interrogatory because she believes concerns cybersecurity issues and outside the scope permitted discovery. Id. 10-11. Secretary Clinton refuses answer Interrogatory because she believes calls for information protected the attorneyclient privilege. Id. 18. After reviewing her response, Plaintiff informed Secretary Clinton counsel that intended move compel Secretary Clinton answer the three interrogatories she refused answer. October 28, 2016, Secretary Clinton counsel stated that Secretary Clinton opposed Plaintiff motion. III. Argument. Pursuant Rule the Federal Rules Civil Procedure, [t]he grounds for objecting interrogatory must stated with specificity. Fed. Civ. 33(b)(4). addition, the party objecting the interrogatory bears the burden show[ing] why discovery should not permitted. Convertino U.S. Department Justice, 565 Supp. 10, 12-13 (D.D.C. 2008) (quoting Alexander Federal Bureau Investigation, 194 F.R.D. 299, 302 (D.D.C. 2000)). -2- Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Although she objects the three interrogatories, Secretary Clinton fails provide sufficient reasons for refusing answer them, and the limited reasons she provides not warrant sustaining her objections. Interrogatory Interrogatory asks, Describe the creation the clintonemail.com system, including who decided create the system, the date was decided create the system, why was created, who set up, and when became operational. Clinton Response Secretary Clinton objects and asserts that the interrogatory outside the scope permitted discovery. Id. 4-5. However, the creation the clintonemail.com system squarely within the scope permitted discovery.1 Understanding the basic facts surrounding the creation the system integral part understanding how and why came used for State Department business. date, witness has testified about these facts, and the Court specifically authorized interrogatories enable Plaintiff gather this information. Secretary Clinton refusal answer the interrogatory therefore misplaced. Secretary Clinton also asserts that Interrogatory addresses the creation the clintonemail.com system. Id. However, Interrogatory clearly asks about the creation [Secretary Clinton clintonemail.com email account. Id. other words, Interrogatory only addresses the creation Secretary Clinton account the system, not the system itself. Secretary Clinton should compelled answer Interrogatory The State Department did not object this question being outside the scope permitted discovery. Defendant Objections -3- Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Interrogatory 14. Interrogatory asks: March 2009, Assistant Secretary State for Diplomatic Security Eric Boswell wrote Information Memo your Chief Staff, Cheryl Mills, that cannot stress too strongly, however, that any unclassified BlackBerry highly vulnerable any setting remotely and covertly monitoring conversations, retrieving email, and exploiting calendars. March 11, 2009 email states that, management meeting with the assistant secretaries, you approached Assistant Secretary Boswell and mentioned that you had read the and that you get it. Did you review the March 2009 Information Memo, and, so, why did you continue using unclassified BlackBerry access your clintonemail.com email account conduct official State Department business? Id. 10-11. Secretary Clinton objects and asserts that the interrogatory asks about cybersecurity issues and therefore outside the scope permitted discovery. Id. 11. Interrogatory does not concern cybersecurity issues. asks whether Secretary Clinton read memorandum about the general use unapproved unclassified Blackberries, and, she did read the memorandum, why did she continue using unapproved unclassified Blackberry the device which accessed the clintonemail.com account she used conduct official government business. yes answer whether she read the memorandum will not reveal any information the parties agreed-upon scope sought avoid. Similarly, the answer yes, Secretary Clinton explanation why, after reading the memorandum, she continued access her clintonemail.com account through her Blackberry also will not reveal any information the parties agreed-upon scope sought avoid. The interrogatory clearly seeks information squarely within the scope permitted discovery. Secretary Clinton should compelled answer Interrogatory 14. -4- Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Interrogatory 24. Interrogatory asks: During your October 22, 2015 appearance before the U.S. House Representatives Select Committee Benghazi, you testified that percent your emails were the State system and they wanted see them, they would certainly have been able so. Identify the basis for this statement, including all facts which you relied support the statement, how and when you became aware these facts, and, you were made aware these facts through another person, identify the person who made you aware these facts. Id. 18. Secretary Clinton objects and asserts that the interrogatory asks for information protected the attorney-client privilege. Id. The attorney-client privilege only protects confidential communications between clients and their attorneys made for the purpose securing legal advice services. Tax Analysts Internal Revenue System, 117 F.3d 607, 618 (D.C. Cir. 1997). addition, [i]t not sufficient show merely that the communication was between client and attorney. Federal Trade Commission Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals., Inc., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131862, *29 (D.D.C. Sept. 27, 2016). The party claiming the privilege must demonstrate that one the significant purposes the communication was obtain give legal advice. Id. *29-30. addition, communication from attorney client only protected rest[s] confidential information obtained from the client. Upjohn Company United States, 449 U.S. 383, 395-96 (1981). [P]urely factual exchanges between attorney and client merit protection when those facts are provided the attorney his request for the purpose enabling him provide legal advice. Boehringer, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 131862, *29. However, attorney conveys his client facts acquired from other persons sources, those facts are not privileged. Brinton U.S. Department State, 636 F.2d 600, 604 (D.C. Cir. 1980). -5- Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Interrogatory does not seek any factual information Secretary Clinton may have provided her attorneys confidence for purposes obtaining legal advice. Nor does seek any advice Secretary Clinton attorneys may have provided the secretary that would reveal facts she provided them confidence. The interrogatory only seeks the factual basis for specific representation Secretary Clinton made Congress. irrelevant whether Secretary Clinton told her attorneys about the factual basis for this representation, either for purposes obtaining legal advice for some other purpose, because Plaintiff has not asked about any such communications. result, the attorney client privilege does not apply. the extent Secretary Clinton might claim that her attorneys provided her with the factual basis for the representation she made Congress, she has made attempt demonstrate how her attorneys obtained this information. She plainly has not demonstrated that her attorneys obtained the information from her. Even Secretary Clinton provided the information her attorneys, the attorney-client privilege does not prevent its disclosure, only protects disclosure the communication with the attorneys. does not prevent disclosure the underlying facts. the secretary attorneys obtained the information from third parties, such the State Department, from their own efforts analysis, not fact conveyed confidence from client attorney for purposes seeking legal advice. Because Secretary Clinton has failed provide any such information justify her assertion the attorney client privilege, she should compelled answer Interrogatory 24. IV. Conclusion. Plaintiff respectfully requests the Court compel Secretary Clinton answer the three interrogatories she refuses answer. -6- Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Dated: November 2016 Respectfully submitted, /s/ Michael Bekesha Michael Bekesha D.C. Bar No. 995749 JUDICIAL WATCH, INC. 425 Third Street S.W., Suite 800 Washington, 20024 (202) 646-5172 Counsel for Plaintiff Judicial Watch, Inc. -7- Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141 Filed 11/03/16 Page Certification hereby certify that Plaintiff has good faith conferred with former Secretary State Hillary Rodham Clinton and the U.S. Department State effort obtain Secretary Clinton answers the three interrogatories she refuses answer without court action. /s/ Michael Bekesha Case 1:13-cv-01363-EGS Document 141-1 Filed 11/03/16 Page THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE DISTRICT COLUMBIA JUDICIAL WATCH, INC., Plaintiff, U.S. DEPARTMENT STATE, Defendant. Civil Action No. 13-cv-1363 (EGS) [PROPOSED] ORDER Upon consideration Plaintiff Motion Compel Former Secretary State Hillary Rodham Clinton Answer Interrogatories and the entire record herein, hereby ORDERED that: Plaintiff motion GRANTED. ORDERED. DATE: The Hon. Emmet Sullivan, U.S.D.J.