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Tom Fitton's Judicial Watch Weekly Update

Judicial Watch Sues FBI

Judicial Watch Lawsuit Forces Release of Records on Raid of Project Veritas’s O’Keefe’s Home
Judicial Watch Sues FBI Over Censorship of Hunter Biden Laptop Story
Judicial Watch Sues for Surgeon General Contact with Big Tech about Vaccines
DHS Recalls Air Marshals on Migrant Welfare Missions along Mexican Border

 

Judicial Watch Lawsuit Forces Release of Records on Raid of Project Veritas’s O’Keefe’s Home

Journalist group, Project Veritas, investigates corruption and dishonesty in public and private institutions. James O’Keefe is CEO and Chairman of the Board.

He and the organization apparently stepped on some highly sensitive toes in Washington, and Washington reacted with an abusive raid of his home.

We received 11 pages of heavily redacted records from the U.S Department of Justice concerning communications of The New York Times to officials in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (SDNY), showing the Times was tipped off about the November 6, 2021, FBI raids on the homes of Project Veritas founder/CEO James O’Keefe and then-Project Veritas journalists.

Seven pages of records are redacted in large part and three pages are withheld entirely, which the agency claims are “not part of the responsive record.”

The records were produced in a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit we filed in September 2022 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after the agency failed to respond to a March 29, 2022, FOIA request (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Justice (No.1:22-cv-02652)).

Our lawsuit seeks all records of government and non-government communications between officials in the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York and representatives of the New York Times regarding Project Veritas, James O’Keefe, Ashley Biden and others.

The records reveal that the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York was in contact with New York Times reporters, including William K. Rashbaum (referred to in the email chains as “Willy”) and Ben Protess, before, during, and after the raids on the homes of O’Keefe and then-Project Veritas reporters.

The records include a November 4, 2021, email chain labeled “Search in Mamaroneck re [redacted] diary?”, from James Margolin, former Chief Public Information Officer of SDNY to Nicholas Biase, former senior public affairs officer for SDNY, and an individual whose name is redacted. Margolin states that “Willy” from the Times has information about the search warrants and investigation seemingly about Ashley Biden’s diary:

Willy Rashbaum from the Times just called and says they know or believe that a search warrant is being conducted in Mamaroneck this morning at a location that is either the residence of Eric Cochrane (sp?) — who may or may not be a whistle-blower — or a Project Veritas office. He believes this is in connection with a Florida investigation into whether Project Veritas stole, or purchased a stolen, diary belonging to [redacted].

Margolin later includes redacted details about “two searches” regarding the homes of James O’Keefe and then-Project Veritas journalist Spencer Meads.

Margolin later states: “Times now believes it’s not ‘a Florida investigation’ but an SDNY investigation, ‘and it involves more than just the diary’ (no elaboration on that).”

In a November 6, 2021, email with the subject line ““Re: O’Keefe (arrest?)” from Margolin to Biase and others, Margolin states, “The Times hears O’Keefe was arrested this morning.” The rest of the body of the email is redacted as “not part of the responsive record.”

In response, Biase thanks Margolin and writes: “The Times has his neighbor on record (who they suspect may not be entirely truthful) saying that FBI were banging on O’Keefe’s door with guns (or at least one agent with a gun) drawn.”

On November 24, 2021, Margolin emails a redacted individual and Biase with the subject line “Veritas,” stating that “Willy” (William K. Rashbaum of Times) informed Margolin the Times was doing another story about Project Veritas, and “they’re pretty certain subpoenas went to [redacted].” Margolin explains that Willy asked him for “a wave-off if” the information was wrong, adding “I [Margolin] made no promises.”

Biase writes on November 30, 2021, in the heavily redacted email chain that Biase had spoken with NYT reporters“Willy” and Ben Protess, and “neither mentioned it. Maybe Jim?” The rest of the body of the email is redacted as “not part of the responsive record.”

The New York Times was obviously tipped off about the unprecedented raid on the home of James O’Keefe and other Project Veritas journalists. And these new Justice Department records raise more questions than answers about how that happened.

 

Judicial Watch Sues FBI over Censorship of Hunter Biden Laptop Story

The FBI has become a political enforcement arm of the Biden Administration and the Biden family. We’re going to court to interrupt the corruption.

We filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) suit against the Justice Department for records of communications between the FBI and social media sites regarding foreign influence in elections, as well as the Hunter Biden laptop story (Judicial Watch Inc. v U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:23-cv-00079)).

We sued in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after the FBI failed to respond fully to an August 28, 2022, FOIA request for:

  1. All alerts, notifications, advisories, foreign threat indicators, or similar records provided by any official or employee of the FBI to any officer or employee of Meta (formerly Facebook), Twitter, or any other social media company regarding the threat of disinformation disseminated by foreign actors related to any U.S. election.
  2. All records of communication between any official or employee of the FBI and any officer or employee of Meta, Twitter, or any other social media company regarding the laptop reportedly used by Hunter Biden, any news media reporting regarding the laptop and/or its contents, and/or the provenance of any information contained in any such reporting.

In October 2020, in the run-up to the presidential election, the New York Post was able to confirm that Hunter Biden’s laptop, which was abandoned at a Delaware computer shop, contained embarrassing and possibly incriminating information about the Biden family. The Post’s story was censored by Twitter and other social media platforms despite its accuracy. Recent “Twitter files” released by Elon Musk show that FBI pressure on “Russian disinformation” led to the censorship:

San Francisco FBI agent Elvis Chan “[sent] 10 documents to Twitter’s then-Head of Site Integrity, Yoel Roth, through Teleporter, a one-way communications channel from the FBI to Twitter,” the evening before the release of the Post story.

Other “Twitter files” show the FBI pushed Twitter to also censor countless Twitter users who tweeted concerns (and jokes) about election integrity just before the 2020 election.

The FBI was literally paying Twitter to censor Americans just before the 2020 election! The FBI seems to have interfered in the 2020 election to help Joe Biden by encouraging Big Tech to censor Americans about the Hunter Biden laptop and other debates. And to add to the scandal, they are now covering up their misconduct.

We have a comprehensive investigation and litigation project to expose and stop Big Government-Big Tech censorship. We sued the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for all records of communications between the Cybersecurity and Information Security Agency (CISA), a division of DHS, and the Election Integrity Partnership (EIP), which was created to flag online election content for censorship and suppression.

In September 2022, we sued the Secretary of State of the State of California for having YouTube censor a Judicial Watch election integrity video.

In May 2022, YouTube censored a Judicial Watch video about Biden corruption and election integrity issues in the 2020 election. The video, titled “Impeach? Biden Corruption Threatens National Security,” was falsely determined to be “election misinformation” and removed by YouTube, and Judicial Watch’s YouTube account was suspended for a week. The video featured an interview with me. Judicial Watch continues to post it’s video content on its Rumble channel (https://rumble.com/vz7aof-fitton-impeach-biden-corruption-threatens-national-security.html).

In April 2021, we published documents revealing how California state officials pressured social media companies (Twitter, Facebook, Google (YouTube)) to censor posts about the 2020 election.

In May 2021, we revealed documents showing that Iowa state officials pressured social media companies, Twitter and Facebook, to censor posts about the 2020 election.

In July 2021, we uncovered records from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which revealed that Facebook coordinated closely with the CDC to control the COVID narrative and “misinformation” and that over $3.5 million in free advertising given to the CDC by social media companies.

And, as you can see below, we’re just ramping up!

 

Judicial Watch Sues for Surgeon General Contact with Big Tech about Vaccines

In the Biden administration’s zeal to push the COVID-19 vaccines, it turned it’s Surgeon General into an anti-constitutional tyrant.

We filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for communications and records of the Surgeon General’s Communications Director’s contact with social media companies regarding COVID-19 vaccines (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (No. 1:23-cv-00113)).

We sued in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after HHS failed to respond adequately to a March 3, 2022, FOIA request for:

All records, including, but not limited to, electronic mail, texts, memoranda, and handwritten notes, of, regarding, referring, or relating to any efforts of Alexandria Phillips, Communications Director, Office of the Surgeon General, to contact any employee of Facebook, Twitter, TikTok, Instagram, Snapchat, Reddit, YouTube, LinkedIn, Tumblr, and Pinterest concerning COVID-19 vaccines.

In 2021, the U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy issued a report titled “Confronting Health Misinformation” to “slow the spread of health misinformation during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond,” which called for censorship of speech about the vaccines and other COVID controversies:

Prioritize early detection of misinformation “super-spreaders” and repeat offenders. Impose clear consequences for accounts that repeatedly violate platform policies.

On March 3, 2022, Murthy demanded that the tech companies turn over information about individuals who spread COVID-19 misinformation:

In a formal notice, Murthy requested major tech platforms submit information about the prevalence and scale of COVID-19 misinformation on their sites, from social networks, search engines, crowdsourced platforms, e-commerce platforms and instant messaging systems.

Biden’s Surgeon General is abusing his office to pressure Big Tech companies to censor Americans. This lawsuit aims to uncover the details of this government attack on the First Amendment.

 

DHS Recalls Air Marshals on Migrant Welfare Missions along Mexican Border

The Biden administration dishonestly refers to its border crisis as “a surge in irregular migration.” To cope with the mess it created, it began to pull Federal Air Marshals away from their basic duties. Our Corruption Chronicles blog has the latest update on the result of our pressure.

Thanks to pressure from the Air Marshal National Council and Judicial Watch’s reporting, the Biden administration will stop sending Federal Air Marshals (FAM) to the Mexican border to provide illegal immigrants with welfare checks, transportation, and other basic services. The reckless practice left aircraft at risk by sending 150-200 FAM monthly to the southern border to help deal with “a surge in irregular migration.” Judicial Watch was the first to report on the deployments in late October when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) sent an electronic memorandum to the highly skilled law enforcement officers informing them of the assignments, which consisted of 21-day rotations that could be extended for up to 120 days.

Judicial Watch obtained a copy of the directive from various recipients at the agency, which operates under the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), created after 9/11 to prevent another terrorist attack. FAM are charged with protecting commercial passenger flights by deterring and countering the risk of terrorist activity, yet they were plucked from their duties to babysit illegal aliens. “The nation is experiencing a surge in irregular migration along the Southwest Border (SWB),” the October notice to FAM officers read. “The unprecedented volume of Noncitizen Migrants (NCMs) currently apprehended mandates immediate further action to protect the life and safety of federal personnel and noncitizens in CBP [Customs and Border Protection] custody.”

The first wave of air marshals was dispatched to El Paso, Texas and Yuma, Arizona on October 30 for an October 31 start. Thirty officers and a supervisor went to El Paso, 15 officers and a supervisor to Yuma. Here is the important work that the specially trained law enforcement officers were doing on the southern border rather than their critical duty of protecting commercial planes flagged for terrorist threats. “Hospital Watch, Transportation, Law Enforcement Searches, Entry Control, Security at CBP Facilities and Welfare Checks.” In a formal complaintto the DHS Inspector General, the Air Marshal National Council, which represents thousands of FAM nationwide, accused TSA Administrator David Pekoske and FAM Director Tirrell Stevenson of violating federal law and overstepping their authority by assigning air marshals to assist the U.S. Border Patrol with the illegal immigration crisis. The complaint also accused Homeland Security leaders of fraud, waste, and abuse of authority.

Earlier this month when an intelligence alert disclosed that Al Qaeda is planning attacks in the U.S. involving planes, the Air Marshal National Council fired off a letter to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas as well as Pekoske and Stevenson reminding them that deploying FAM to the southern border to perform humanitarian work is reckless and putting the nation at extreme risk. Judicial Watch published a story about the threat after obtaining a copy from government sources of the intelligence alert, which was delivered on December 31, 2022, at 12:23:52 Greenwich Mean Time. The caption of the widely circulated warning reads: “Al-Qaeda says upcoming attacks on US, possibly involving planes, will use new techniques and tactics.”

It appears that the combined efforts of Judicial Watch and the Air Marshal National Council have squeezed the Biden administration to end the controversial border missions. A memo dispersed to FAM just days ago says that all future deployments to the southwest border (SWB) have been suspended until further notice. “Wave #5 will continue their deployment until January 27th and then travel home as planned on January 28th,” according to the notice provided to Judicial Watch by various government sources. “Wave #6 will NOT DEPLOY as planned on January 25th.” The missive directs FAM to cancel travel and informs officers that hotel and car rental reservations will be cancelled by the agency. Air marshals nationwide are thrilled that they can return to their critical mission of securing the nation’s transportation system and David Londo, president of the Air Marshal National Council, said “it looks like we won.”

Until next week …


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