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Case Name ACLU of Illinois, Inc. v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security NS-IL-0004
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-02768 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) National Security
Special Collection Trump Administration FOIA cases
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On April 12, 2017, the ACLUs of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin filed this lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). This was one of over a dozen such suits; each aimed to shed light on how U.S. Customs and Border ... read more >
On April 12, 2017, the ACLUs of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin filed this lawsuit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). This was one of over a dozen such suits; each aimed to shed light on how U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) implemented President Trump's January 27 and March 6 Executive Orders that ban admission to the U.S. of nationals of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Specifically, plaintiffs sought information "concerning CBP’s local implementation of President Trump’s January 27, 2017 Executive Order...as well as any other judicial order or executive directive issued regarding Executive Order No. 1, including President Trump’s March 6, 2017 Executive Order." The request at issue in this particular lawsuit concerned implementation at CBP’s Chicago Field Office, including Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, and other international airports and ports of entry across the Midwestern states in which plaintiffs were located.

In the complaint, the plaintiffs argued that the requested records "would facilitate the public’s understanding" of how Defendants implemented and enforced the Executive Orders through the Chicago Field Office, in particular at O'Hare Airport, and that "[s]uch information is critical to the public’s ability to hold the government accountable." Plaintiffs argued that CBP detained approximately 17 persons at O'Hare on Jan. 28 under Executive Order No. 1, and refused to release information about the detainees, even to their lawyers.

On Apr. 12, the case was assigned to Hon. Robert M. Dow, Jr. On Apr. 13, the court set a case management conference for Jun. 28, which the court later (on May 25) rescheduled to Jun. 29.

On May 8, the government filed a motion to treat all 13 of the ACLU's FOIA cases as "multi-district litigation," effectively seeking to consolidate them before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. The ACLU's response is due May 30. For the transfer motion, see the document on this case's page.

On May 10, the government filed an unopposed motion requesting an extension of time, until June 29, to respond to the plaintiffs' complaint. Judge Dow on May 15 granted this motion. On May 12, the government filed a motion to stay proceedings pending the decision by the judicial panel regarding the multi district litigation. The ACLU responded on May 30, and the government replied on June 7. No hearing on this motion has yet been scheduled.

On June 19, the defendants filed a notice of a decision in a related case, ACLU of Maine v. CBP. The District Court of Maine granted the defendants' motion for a temporary stay of proceedings. On June 26, CBP filed notice of a decision in related cases.

On June 27, the ACLU's of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin filed a joint status report. On June 28, Judge Dow granted the government's May 12 motion to stay all proceedings pending decision on the motion to transfer.

On Aug. 2, the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation denied defendants' transfer motion. On 8/21, the ACLU's filed a joint status report.

On Aug. 22, the government answered the complaint. On Aug. 25, the court granted the parties' joint Aug. 18 motion for extension of time to file a joint status report. On Sept. 15 the ACLU's filed a motion to set a production schedule. The parties met on Sept. 20 to confer, and the court directed the parties to meet every week going forward to have a conversation regarding the government's document search. On Sept. 22, the case was referred to Magistrate Judge Weisman for discovery supervision, the settlement conference, and all discovery motions, including the ACLUs' Sept. 22 motion.

On Sept. 28, the parties had a motion hearing before Magistrate Judge Weisman. On Oct. 2, Magistrate Weisman set a status hearing for Oct. 24 and requested that the defendants file a memo of law on aggregation. On Oct. 11, the government filed a memo reflecting its decision to aggregate the 19 ACLU FOIA requests across the country. On Oct. 23, the plaintiffs responded in opposition to the government's decision to aggregate, arguing that: 1) the 19 FOIA requests do not constitute a "single request"; 2) the Illinois ACLU plaintiff is not the same requestor as the other ACLU plaintiffs; 3) the plaintiffs' FOIA request does not satisfy the statutory "unusual circumstances" required in order to aggregate; and 4) the 19 FOIA requests do not involve "clearly related matters." The government responded on Nov. 6. The plaintiffs replied on Nov. 13.

On Nov. 15, the court held a motion hearing and continued the motion to set a discover production schedule to Nov. 21. The court additionally requested that plaintiffs accept that defendants' current search terms constitute a "reasonable effort" on defendants' part to comply with the FOIA search. On Nov. 20, plaintiffs responded that they agree the current search terms are reasonable as to an initial search of defendants' email accounts, but that such an agreement does not negate defendants' obligation to search for paper records, other databases, or records held by other custodians.

The case is ongoing.

Ava Morgenstern - 06/13/2017
Julie Aust - 11/24/2017


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Defendant-type
Jurisdiction-wide
Discrimination-basis
National origin discrimination
General
Record-keeping
Records Disclosure
Terrorism/Post 9-11 issues
Immigration/Border
Admission - criteria
Admission - procedure
Border police
Refugees
Visas - criteria
Visas - procedures
National Origin/Ethnicity
Arab/Afgani/Middle Eastern
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Special Case Type
Multi-District Litigation (MDL)
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. § 552
Defendant(s) U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description ACLUs of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted Moot
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Case Ongoing Yes
Case Listing NS-TX-0004 : ACLU Foundation of Texas v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (S.D. Tex.)
NS-ME-0001 : ACLU of Maine v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (D. Me.)
NS-FL-0002 : ACLU of Florida v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (S.D. Fla.)
Additional Resources
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  ACLU Files Lawsuits Demanding Local Documents on Implementation of Trump Muslim Ban
www.aclu.org
Date: Apr. 12, 2017
By: American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:17-cv-2768 (N.D. Ill.)
NS-IL-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/20/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
NS-IL-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/12/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Motion for Transfer of Actions Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1407 for Coordinated or Consolidated Pretrial Proceedings [ECF# 22]
NS-IL-0004-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/11/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Motion to Stay Proceedings Pending Decision on Motion to Transfer [ECF# 23]
NS-IL-0004-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/12/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
ACLU's Opposition to Defendants' Motion to Stay Proceedings [ECF# 29]
NS-IL-0004-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/30/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Reply Memorandum of Law in Support of Motion to Stay Proceedings Pending Decision on Motion to Transfer [ECF# 34]
NS-IL-0004-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/07/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice of Decision [ECF# 35]
NS-IL-0004-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 06/19/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order Denying Transfer [ECF# 44] (N.D. Ill.)
NS-IL-0004-0007.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/02/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Joint Status Report [ECF# 48]
NS-IL-0004-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/21/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Answer [ECF# 50]
NS-IL-0004-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/22/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Order [ECF# 53] (N.D. Ill.)
NS-IL-0004-0010.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/25/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Memorandum of Law Regarding Aggregation [ECF# 62]
NS-IL-0004-0011.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/11/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Defendants' Opposition to Plaintiffs' Motion to Set Production Schedule [ECF# 69]
NS-IL-0004-0012.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/06/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Reply in Support of Motion to Set Production Schedule [ECF# 70]
NS-IL-0004-0013.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/13/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiffs' Response to the Court's Request in its Minute Order of November 16, 2017 [ECF# 72]
NS-IL-0004-0014.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/20/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Breyer, Charles R. (N.D. Cal.)
NS-IL-0004-0007
Dow, Robert Michael Jr. (N.D. Ill.)
NS-IL-0004-0010 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Huvelle, Ellen Segal (D.D.C.)
NS-IL-0004-0007
Kaplan, Lewis A. (S.D.N.Y.)
NS-IL-0004-0007
Perry, Catherine D. (E.D. Mo.)
NS-IL-0004-0007
Proctor, R. David (N.D. Ala.)
NS-IL-0004-0007
Vance, Sarah S. (E.D. La.)
NS-IL-0004-0007
Weisman, M. David Court not on record [Magistrate]
NS-IL-0004-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Gatnarek, Heather L. (Kentucky)
NS-IL-0004-9000
Glenberg, Rebecca Kim (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Gordon, John Bennett (Minnesota)
NS-IL-0004-9000
Kabat, Patrick S. (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Kinsella, Kathleen V. (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Levenson, Freda J. (Ohio)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Miller, Amy A. (Nebraska)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Naron, Gregory R. (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Rothert, Anthony [Tony] E. (Missouri)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Sharp, William E. (Kentucky)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Spears, Natalie J. (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0001 | NS-IL-0004-0004 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0013 | NS-IL-0004-0014 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Berns, Matthew (District of Columbia)
NS-IL-0004-0002 | NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0005 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0009 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Levin, Joel R. (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0006 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0009 | NS-IL-0004-0011 | NS-IL-0004-0012
Patil, Chetan Adinath (District of Columbia)
NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0011 | NS-IL-0004-0012 | NS-IL-0004-9000
Patil, Chetan (District of Columbia)
NS-IL-0004-0002 | NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0005 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0009
Readler, Chad A. (District of Columbia)
NS-IL-0004-0002 | NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0005 | NS-IL-0004-0006 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0009 | NS-IL-0004-0011 | NS-IL-0004-0012
Shapiro, Elizabeth J. (District of Columbia)
NS-IL-0004-0002 | NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0005 | NS-IL-0004-0006 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0009 | NS-IL-0004-0011 | NS-IL-0004-0012
Walsh, Thomas P. (Illinois)
NS-IL-0004-0003 | NS-IL-0004-0005 | NS-IL-0004-0006 | NS-IL-0004-0008 | NS-IL-0004-0009 | NS-IL-0004-0011 | NS-IL-0004-0012

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