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Judicial Watch, Inc. is a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, which promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.

Judicial Watch, Inc. is a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, which promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law.

Because no one
is above the law!


Tom Fitton's Judicial Watch Weekly Update

New Vaccine Lawsuit

Judicial Watch Sues for Records on COVID Vaccine Safety Studies
Dozens on Terrorist Watchlist Among Record 2.4 million Migrants Caught in 2022
DHS Slammed for Failing to Counter Terrorism, Manage Explosive Devices


Judicial Watch Sues for Records on COVID Vaccine Safety Studies

Why is the Biden administration hiding information about the safety of the vaccine it is so aggressively pushing on everyone?

We filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit against the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) for records on COVID-19 vaccine safety studies (Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (No. 1:22-cv-03153)).

We sued in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after the National Institutes of Allergies and Infectious Diseases (a component of HHS) inadequately responded to a June 1, 2022, FOIA request for:

    1. All safety studies, data, reports, and analyses produced by the Division of Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (DMID) relating to the safety of ‘vaccines’ and/or gene therapies to treat and/or prevent SARS-CoV-2 and/or COVID-19 made by Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, and Janssen.
    2. All emails sent to and from the following DMID officials relating to the safety of ‘vaccines’ and/or gene therapies to treat and/or prevent SARSCoV-2 and/or COVID-19 made by Pfizer, BioNTech, Moderna, Johnson & Johnson, and Janssen:
    1. The Director of DMID
    2. The head of the Office of Genomics & Advanced Technologies
    3. The head of the Office of International Research in Infectious Diseases
    4. The head of the Office of Regulatory Affairs
    5. The head of the Office of Clinical Research Affairs
    6. The head of the Clinical Trials Management Section
    7. The head of the Virology Branch
    8. The head of the Respiratory Diseases Branch
    9. The head of the Influenza, SARS, and Other Viral Respiratory Diseases Section

On May 3, 2022, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) released a paper titled “Safety and Immunogenicity of a Third Dose of SARS-CoV-2 mRNA Vaccine – An Interim Analysis” that “evaluated early safety and immunogenicity after a third mRNA vaccination in adults who received the mRNA-1273 primary series in the Phase 1 trial approximately 9 to 10 months earlier.”

Contributors to that study include three affiliates of the DMID: Mamodikoe Makhene (DMID medical officer), Wendy Buchanan (DMID Clinical Project Manager) and Paul Roberts (DMID Chief Respiratory Pathogens Clinical Research).

The Biden administration is playing shell games with documents on the COVID vaccine. The arrogant cover-up of COVID vaccine safety information further undermines public confidence in these already controversial drugs.

Through previous FOIA activity, we uncovered a substantial amount of information about COVID-19 issues:

  • In October, we uncovered FDA records regarding the COVID booster vaccines through a FOIA lawsuit for records of communication from the former director and deputy director of the FDA’s Office of Vaccines Research and Review, Dr. Marion Gruber and Dr. Philip Krause. On September 13, 2021, Gruber and Krause were among a group of resigning doctors who agreed that, “Available evidence doesn’t yet indicate a need for COVID-19 vaccine booster shots among the general population …”
  • In July 2022, NIH records revealed an FBI “inquiry” into the NIH’s controversial bat coronavirus grant tied to the Wuhan Institute of Virology. The records also show National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) officials were concerned about “gain-of-function” research in China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology in 2016. The Fauci agency was also concerned about EcoHealth Alliance’s lack of compliance with reporting rules and use of gain-of-function research in the NIH-funded research involving bat coronaviruses in Wuhan, China.
  • FDA records showed top officials being pressured by companies and the Biden administration to impose timelines on approval for the booster shots “that make no sense”
  • HHS records revealed that from 2014 to 2019, $826,277 was given to the Wuhan Institute of Virology for bat coronavirus research by the NIAID.
  • NIAID records showed that it gave nine China-related grants to EcoHealth Alliance to research coronavirus emergence in bats and was the NIH’s top issuer of grants to the Wuhan lab itself. The records also included an email from the vice director of the Wuhan Lab asking an NIH official for help finding disinfectants for decontamination of airtight suits and indoor surfaces.
  • HHS records included an “urgent for Dr. Fauci ” email chain, citing ties between the Wuhan lab and the taxpayer funded EcoHealth Alliance. The government emails also reported that the foundation of U.S. billionaire Bill Gates worked closely with the Chinese government to pave the way for Chinese-produced medications to be sold outside China and help “raise China’s voice of governance by placing representatives from China on important international counsels as high-level commitment from China.”
  • HHS records included a grant application for research involving the coronavirus that appears to describe “gain-of-function” research involving RNA extractions from bats, experiments on viruses, attempts to develop a chimeric virus and efforts to genetically manipulate the full-length bat SARSr-CoV WIV1 strain molecular clone.
  • HHS records showed the State Department and NIAID knew immediately in January 2020 that China was withholding COVID data, which was hindering risk assessment and response by public health officials.
  • University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) records show the former director of the Galveston National Laboratory at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB), James W. Le Duc warned Chinese researchers at the Wuhan Institute of Virology of potential investigations into the COVID issue by Congress.
  • HHS records regarding biodistribution studies and related data for the COVID-19 vaccines show a key component of the vaccines developed by Pfizer/BioNTech, lipid nanoparticles (LNPs), were found outside the injection site, mainly the liver, adrenal glands, spleen and ovaries of test animals, eight to 48 hours after injection.
  • Records from the Federal Select Agent Program (FSAP) reveal safety lapses and violations at U.S. biosafety laboratories that conduct research on dangerous agents and toxins.
  • HHS records include emails between National Institutes of Health (NIH) then-Director Francis Collins and Anthony Fauci, the director of National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), about hydroxychloroquine and COVID-19.
  • HHS records show that NIH officials tailored confidentiality forms to China’s terms and that the World Health Organization (WHO) conducted an unreleased, “strictly confidential” COVID-19 epidemiological analysis in January 2020.
  • Fauci emails include his approval of a press release supportive of China’s response to the 2019 novel coronavirus.

Despite all of this work, Judicial Watch is just getting started! I’ll keep you updated as more lawsuits are filed and more information comes in!


Dozens on Terrorist Watchlist Among Record 2.4 million Migrants Caught in 2022

Among the millions pouring across our southern border are some of the worst of the worst: violent gang members and potential terrorists. Our Corruption Chronicles blog paints the disturbing picture.

Besides shattering a U.S. record for apprehending nearly 2.4 million illegal immigrants along the Mexican border in fiscal year 2022, Border Patrol agents arrested hundreds of gang members—mostly from the famously violent Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13)—and dozens of people on the national terrorist watchlist. Federal agents also confiscated thousands of pounds of drugs, mainly methamphetamine, according to government figures released by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) just days ago. The startling year-end (fiscal years run from October to September) stats depict a chaotic Mexican border region rife with lawlessness that is inevitably seeping north.

It is serious enough that the number of migrants arrested in 2022 increased significantly over 2021, which at the time seemed like a crisis at 1.73 million. The Biden administration’s open border policies inspired a last-minute surge of 227,547 illegal aliens in September alone, the figures show. The overwhelming majority of those caught were single adults with the rest of the family units and unaccompanied minors. The Del Rio Border Patrol sector in Texas saw the most traffic with 480,930 illegal alien encounters, an increase of 85% over 2021. The Rio Grande Valley sector, also in Texas, came in second with 468,124 encounters. Other busy stations include Yuma in Arizona (310,094), El Paso (307,884) and Tucson (251,984).

As if the record-breaking figures were not disturbing enough, violent gangbangers, terrorists and drugs also crossed the border. The feds arrested 751 gang members compared to 348 in 2021. Nearly half—312—of those apprehended in 2022 belong to the MS-13, a feared street gang of mostly Central American illegal immigrants that has spread throughout the U.S. and is renowned for drug distribution, murder, rape, robbery, home invasions, kidnappings, vandalism and other violent crimes. The Justice Department’s National Gang Intelligence Center (NGIC) says criminal street gangs like the MS-13 are responsible for the majority of violent crimes in the U.S. and are the primary distributors of most illicit drugs. More than 145 members of Paisas, a prison gang of inmates from Mexico, were also apprehended crossing the border in 2022 and 146 from the 18th Street gang, a Los Angeles-based tribe known for recruiting youths.

In addition to all this, nearly 100 people on the U.S. government’s terrorist watchlist were apprehended at the Mexican border, the year-end figures reveal. That is a huge increase over 2021, when only 16 suspected terrorists were caught. The 98 people busted this year appear on a government database called Terrorist Screening Dataset (TSDS) that contains sensitive information on known or suspected terrorists as well as individuals who represent a potential threat to the U.S., including known affiliates of individuals on the watchlist, according to CBP. The agency claims in the year-end stats that encounters with individuals on the terrorist watchlist at U.S. borders is very “uncommon.” Judicial Watch has long reported on the increasing number of Muslim migrants—including from terrorist nations—entering the U.S. through the Mexican border. This includes a growing population from Bangladesh, a recruiting ground for terrorist groups such as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and Al-Qaeda Indian Subcontinent (AQIS), getting caught by federal agents along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Last year a Bangladeshi man based in Mexico was sentenced to 46 months in prison for operating an “international human smuggling conspiracy” during a period in which the U.S. saw a spike in migrants from terrorist nations entering the country through the famously porous southern border. The smuggler, 41-year-old Mohamad Milon Hossain, lived in Tapachula in the southeast Mexican state of Chiapas bordering Guatemala. The smuggling operation run by Hossain is part of a broader crisis involving a growing demographic of illegal aliens from terrorist nations entering the U.S. through the Mexican border. The government classifies them as Special Interest Aliens (SIA) and they are flowing north via Latin America in huge numbers, thanks to established Transitional Criminal Organizations (TCO) that facilitate travel along drug and migrant smuggling routes. Tens of thousands of SIAs—from the Middle East, Asia, and Africa—entered Panama and Colombia in recent years. Nearly all the SIA migrants were headed to the United States and most came from Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Somalia, Bangladesh, and India.


DHS Slammed for Failing to Counter Terrorism, Manage Explosive Devices

It should come as no surprise that the massive federal agency created to protect the homeland (including our border) is a bureaucratic disaster. Our Corruption Chronicles blog has the details.

Two decades after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was created to protect the U.S. from another 9/11, the agency faces serious management and performance challenges that prevent it from fulfilling its critical mission, according to a federal audit that says DHS must improve how it identifies domestic terrorism threats and better manage its efforts to counter homemade explosive devices. DHS also got slammed for one of its biggest lapses, failing to secure the southern border. “Migrant surges require a whole-of-government approach,” according to the report issued days ago by the DHS Inspector General. However, a coordinated response did not occur because DHS failed to conduct multi-component planning between Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Furthermore, the surges in immigration exposed technology challenges which impede CBP and ICE personnel from tracking migrants from apprehension to release or transfer, the probe found. “Technology deficiencies also meant that data was not consistently documented in DHS’ systems of record, which can delay DHS from uniting children with families and sponsors, or cause migrants to remain in DHS custody longer than legally allowed,” the watchdog writes in its report. Investigators also trash the way DHS managed the sudden influx of Ukrainian and Afghan citizens. Specifically, screening, vetting, and inspecting all evacuees after the Biden administration withdrew American troops from Afghanistan was a “challenge,” the report reveals, adding that the watchdog continues to evaluate CBP’s access to critical data necessary to fully vet individuals trying to enter the U.S.

The report delves into other areas such as DHS’ cybersecurity weaknesses and the famously corrupt Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the 20,000-employee conglomerate created by former President Jimmy Carter’s executive order in 1979. FEMA operates under DHS and lists helping people before, during and after disasters as its mission. The agency has been involved in a multitude of scandals surrounding pervasive fraud in its COVID-19 relief programs. DHS and FEMA need to analyze systemic weaknesses across the spectrum of disaster-related funding and services, the IG writes, adding that the agencies must make overarching improvements in risk assessment, controls, policies, systems and applications, resources, training, and data. “As of July 31, 2022, OIG had received more than 7,500 complaints and initiated more than 300 investigations related to COVID-19, including allegations that fraud networks have secured pandemic-related benefits,” the new report states. Fraud and corruption is so rampant in the government’s massive COVID-19 cash giveaway that the Department of Justice (DOJ) created a COVID-19 Fraud Enforcement Task Force to “enhance efforts to combat and prevent pandemic-related fraud.”

This probe did not dig deeply into the pandemic fraud cases but offered enough information to convey the problem. Attached to the 17-page audit is a document issued by DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and the “leadership team across all DHS components” listing the agency’s 12 priorities for 2022. They include advancing Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) in the workforce and to protect the privacy, civil rights, civil liberties, and human rights of the communities served as well to ensure DHS reflects the diversity of the communities it serves. Another priority is securing the nation’s borders by giving the agency’s workforce the tools to interdict irregular migration and illicit flows of drugs, weapons, and other contraband. Record-breaking illegal immigration in fiscal year 2022 proves that it never materialized. DHS also made it a priority to build a fair, orderly, and humane immigration system and to implement lawful pathways as alternatives to irregular migration and enhanced policies to administer the nation’s laws and uphold our values as a nation of immigrants expeditiously and fairly. The rest of the priorities include preparing the nation to respond and recover from disasters and combat the climate crisis, increasing cybersecurity and combatting all forms of terrorism.

After getting blasted by auditors, DHS struck back claiming in a lengthy letter that the report is “misleading” and accusing its watchdog of being “inaccurate, contextually incomplete and confusing.”

Until next week…


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