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Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name ACLU Foundation of Texas v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection NS-TX-0004
Docket / Court 4:17-cv-01128 ( S.D. Tex. )
State/Territory Texas
Case Type(s) National Security
Special Collection Trump Administration FOIA cases
Attorney Organization ACLU Chapters (any)
Case Summary
On April 12, 2017, the ACLU Foundation of Texas filed this suit 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 implemented President Trump's Jan. 27 and Mar. 6 Executive Orders (EO) that ban ... read more >
On April 12, 2017, the ACLU Foundation of Texas filed this suit 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 implemented President Trump's Jan. 27 and Mar. 6 Executive Orders (EO) 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 the Executive Order," including President Trump’s March 6, 2017 Executive Order. The request concerned implementation at international airports within the purview of CBP's Houston Field Office, including Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and Bush Intercontinental Airport. The request also concerned the number of individuals who were detained or subjected to secondary screening, extended questioning, enforcement examination, or consideration for a waiver at the aforementioned airports pursuant to the EO.

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" and that "[s]uch information is critical to the public’s ability to hold the government accountable."

The case was assigned to Judge Vanessa D. Gilmore.

On May 8, the government filed a motion to treat all of these FOIA cases as "multidistrict litigation" effectively consolidating them before the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. For the transfer motion see this case. The ACLU filed their opposition to the motion to transfer May 30, arguing that "[g]ranting consolidation and transfer would promote forum-shopping and delay, not justice." On Jun. 26, the court ordered proceedings stayed pending the decision by the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation on the government's transfer motion. On Aug. 3, the U.S. District Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation denied the government's consolidation motion. In its order, the Panel found that although the thirteen FOIA cases share "a limited number of factual issues," these issues "appear relatively straightforward and unlikely to entail extensive pretrial proceedings."

The parties filed a joint status report on Jan. 8, 2018 indicating that the government had produced a batch of responsive records, that its search for additional records was ongoing, and that it would make future productions on a rolling basis.

The case is ongoing.

Virginia Weeks - 05/02/2017
Virginia Weeks - 02/12/2018
Jamie Kessler - 08/21/2017


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Discrimination-basis
Immigration status
National origin discrimination
Religion discrimination
General
Racial profiling
Record-keeping
Records Disclosure
Religious programs / policies
Immigration/Border
Admission - criteria
Admission - procedure
Asylum - criteria
Asylum - procedure
Border police
Detention - conditions
Refugees
Visas - criteria
Visas - procedures
National Origin/Ethnicity
Arab/Afgani/Middle Eastern
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. § 552
Defendant(s) U.S. Customs and Border Protection
U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description ACLU Foundation of Texas
Indexed Lawyer Organizations ACLU Chapters (any)
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
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-CA-0024 : American Civil Liberties Union of Hawai'i v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (N.D. Cal.)
NS-CA-0025 : American Civil Liberties Union of San Diego v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (S.D. Cal.)
NS-IL-0004 : American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (N.D. Ill.)
NS-ME-0001 : American Civil Liberties Union of Maine v. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (D. Me.)
NS-MI-0005 : ACLU of Michigan v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (E.D. Mich.)
NS-GA-0001 : ACLU of Georgia v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (N.D. Ga.)
NS-FL-0002 : American Civil Liberties Union of Florida v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (S.D. Fla.)
NS-AZ-0001 : ACLU of Arizona v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (D. Ariz.)
NS-OR-0005 : ACLU of Oregon v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (D. Or.)
NS-WA-0004 : ACLU of Washington v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (W.D. Wash.)
NS-CA-0026 : ACLU of Southern California v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (C.D. Cal.)
NS-VA-0007 : American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (E.D. Va.)
Additional Resources
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  We Sued for Records About Trump’s Muslim Bans. Here’s What We Found Out.
www.aclu.org
Date: Oct. 24, 2017
By: Vera Eidelman (American Civil Liberties Union)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  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)
4:17-cv-1128 (S.D. Tex.)
NS-TX-0004-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/22/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Plaintiff ACLU Foundation of Texas, Inc.'s Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief for Violation of the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. § 552 [ECF# 1]
NS-TX-0004-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 04/12/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Gilmore, Vanessa D. (S.D. Tex.)
NS-TX-0004-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Cohn, Kali Alanna (Texas)
NS-TX-0004-0001 | NS-TX-0004-9000
Saldivar, Edgar (Texas)
NS-TX-0004-0001 | NS-TX-0004-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Bobb, Andrew A. (Texas)
NS-TX-0004-9000

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