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Case Name Muslim Advocates v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security NS-DC-0110
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-00813 ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
National Security
Special Collection Trump Administration FOIA cases
Attorney Organization Muslim Advocates
Case Summary
On May 2, 2017, the non-profit organization Muslim Advocates filed this suit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The suit aimed to shed light on the government's border searches of electronic devices in the possession of persons from the seven Muslim-majority countries covered by President ... read more >
On May 2, 2017, the non-profit organization Muslim Advocates filed this suit under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The suit aimed to shed light on the government's border searches of electronic devices in the possession of persons from the seven Muslim-majority countries covered by President Trump's Jan. 27 and Mar. 6 Executive Orders (Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen). Plaintiff additionally aimed to learn about the government's border searches of electronic devices in the possession of all persons -- including U.S. citizens -- whom U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agents "perceived to be Muslim." Plaintiff contended that DHS had yet to make the requested records available. Plaintiff therefore filed this suit seeking injunctive and declaratory relief.

In the complaint, plaintiff argued that it had submitted its FOIA request to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) on Mar. 7, 2017. Specifically, plaintiff sought the following:
1. Records created on or after Jan. 24, 2017 related to CBP's search, review, retention, and dissemination of information located on or accessed through electronic devices in the possession of individuals who were encountered by CBP at the border (and the border's functional equivalents); and
2. Records created on or after Feb. 27, 2017 that pertain to the second Executive Order and are otherwise responsive to the first request.

On May 2, this case was assigned to Judge Tanya S. Chutkan. Also on May 2, plaintiff filed notice that it believed this case should be marked related to Knight First Amendment v. DHS.

On Aug. 4, Oct. 6, and Nov. 3, the parties filed joint status reports discussing the progress of the search and document turnover. On Nov. 28, the parties met for a status conference before Judge Chutkan, who ordered that the government, by Dec. 19, provide plaintiff with an estimate regarding the completion date of document production.

The next status report of Jan. 29, 2018, detailed the parties' discussions about search terms. Plaintiff reported that CBP had estimated it would finish production by Sept. 2018 and DHS had provided no estimate. Plaintiff sought an earlier production, but defendants asserted they needed this time to properly review documents before releasing them.

After a Feb. 21, 2018 status conference, Judge Chutkan ordered CBP to produce 275 pages per month. A May 14 order clarified that CBP is to process 500 email record pages per month and also 275 pages of incident-level reports per month. DHS is to process 775 email record and complaint pages per month. July and September status reports indicated the government's review and production were underway.

This case is ongoing.

Julie Aust - 12/03/2017
Ava Morgenstern - 05/05/2018
Virginia Weeks - 10/01/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Discrimination-basis
Immigration status
National origin discrimination
Race discrimination
Religion discrimination
General
Racial profiling
Record-keeping
Records Disclosure
Terrorism/Post 9-11 issues
Watchlist
Immigration/Border
Admission - criteria
Admission - procedure
Asylum - criteria
Asylum - procedure
Border police
Status/Classification
Visas - criteria
Visas - procedures
National Origin/Ethnicity
Arab/Afgani/Middle Eastern
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit religious organization
Type of Facility
Government-run
Causes of Action Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. ยง 552
Defendant(s) U.S. Department of Homeland Security
Plaintiff Description Muslim Advocates is a not-for-profit corporation working to "ensure the civil rights for Americans of all faiths through national legal advocacy, policy engagement, and civic education."
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Muslim Advocates
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted Moot
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filing Year 2017
Case Ongoing Yes
Case Listing NS-DC-0108 : Knight First Amendment Institute v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security (D.D.C.)
Docket(s)
1:17-cv-00813 (D.D.C.)
NS-DC-0110-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/24/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
NS-DC-0110-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/02/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Answer [ECF# 15]
NS-DC-0110-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 07/13/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Joint Status Report [ECF# 18]
NS-DC-0110-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/04/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Second Joint Status Report [ECF# 20]
NS-DC-0110-0004.pdf | Detail
Date: 10/06/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Third Joint Status Report [ECF# 23]
NS-DC-0110-0005.pdf | Detail
Date: 11/03/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Fourth Joint Status Report [ECF# 26]
NS-DC-0110-0006.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/29/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Chutkan, Tanya Sue (D.D.C.)
NS-DC-0110-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Ali, Amir H. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Bousquet, Daniel F (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Chapuis, Emily Lauren (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Khan, Juviara (New York)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Langlinais, Jonathan Alexander (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-9000
Morrison, Kelly M. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Parker, Joshua M. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Shebaya, Sirine (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Smith, Johnathan James (California)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Tulin, Leah J. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0001 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Glass, David M (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0002 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006 | NS-DC-0110-9000
Liu, Jessie K. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006
Philips, Channing D. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0002 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005
Readler, Chad A. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0002 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006
Shapiro, Elizabeth J. (District of Columbia)
NS-DC-0110-0002 | NS-DC-0110-0003 | NS-DC-0110-0004 | NS-DC-0110-0005 | NS-DC-0110-0006

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