University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Center for Investigative Reporting v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security IM-CA-0110
Docket / Court 3:17-cv-07204-EDL ( N.D. Cal. )
State/Territory California
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Special Collection Trump Administration FOIA cases
Case Summary
On Dec. 19, 2017, the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) and one of its journalists brought this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Represented by its own counsel, plaintiffs sued the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) under the Freedom of ... read more >
On Dec. 19, 2017, the Center for Investigative Reporting (CIR) and one of its journalists brought this suit in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. Represented by its own counsel, plaintiffs sued the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

The organizational plaintiff is a national nonprofit investigative news organization. The individual plaintiff is one of its staff reporters. Plaintiffs sought information on expedited removal, a process by which an immigration enforcement official may remove a noncitizen from the United States, without a hearing before an Immigration Judge or review by the Board of Immigration Appeals. Expedited removal currently applies to noncitizens who entered without inspection and who were apprehended within 100 miles of the border and within two weeks of arrival in the country.

Plaintiffs alleged that the Trump Administration's Jan. 25, 2017 Executive Order 13767, which instructed the DHS Secretary to apply expedited removal to the fullest extent of the law, had raised public concern about the fairness of the procedure. Plaintiffs sought to produce news reports on the topic.

The complaint alleged that on June 14, 2017, plaintiffs had submitted a FOIA request to defendant seeking materials since 2012 instructing U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) on the following procedures:
1. Issuing expedited removal orders;
2. Reviewing expedited removal orders;
3. Identifying individuals with facially-valid visas who may receive an expedited removal order because they intend to immigrate;
4. Identifying asylum seekers;
5. Identifying individuals who have not been continuously physically present in the United States for at least two weeks;
6. Understanding evidence that individuals may introduce to demonstrate they should not be subject to expedited removal;
7. Identifying lawful permanent residents (LPR), U.S. citizens, or individuals admitted as refugees or previously granted asylum;
8. Handling cases of suspected asylum fraud;
9. Handling cases of suspected fraud in claiming LPR, U.S. citizen, refugee, or asylee status;
10. Rescinding an expedited removal order;
11. Allowing withdrawal of a request for admission;
12. Using prosecutorial discretion in expedited removal;
13. Handling claims of U.S. citizenship; and
14. Handling individuals' requests to contact attorneys or consulates.

The complaint further alleged that, to date, plaintiffs had not received a substantive response from defendant. Plaintiffs sought a disclosure order under FOIA, legal fees, and expedited action.

On Dec. 19, 2017, the case was assigned to Magistrate Judge Elizabeth D. Laporte. A case management statement is due by Mar. 13, 2018, with a case management conference scheduled for Mar. 20.

Plaintiff filed an amended complaint on Jan. 23. Plaintiff reported that since it filed the suit, defendant had located but had still not released responsive documents. On Mar. 13, the parties filed a joint case management statement, in which defendant maintained it had already complied with the request in full but would meet with plaintiff about the requested additional documents.

The parties are currently in alternative dispute resolution. The next status report is due June 12.

This case is ongoing.

Ava Morgenstern - 04/07/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
General
Access to lawyers or judicial system
Failure to train
Grievance Procedures
Inadequate citizen complaint investigations and procedures
Over/Unlawful Detention
Placement in detention facilities
Record-keeping
Records Disclosure
Staff (number, training, qualifications, wages)
Immigration/Border
Asylum - criteria
Asylum - procedure
Border police
Constitutional rights
Deportation - criteria
Deportation - judicial review
Deportation - procedure
Detention - procedures
ICE/DHS/INS raid
Immigration lawyers
Refugees
Status/Classification
Undocumented immigrants - rights and duties
Visas - procedures
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-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 Nonprofit investigative journalism organization
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
Additional Resources
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  DHS Hit With FOIA Suit Over Expedited Removal Procedures
www.law360.com
Date: Dec. 20, 2017
By: Tiffany Hu
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Reveal: Expedited Removal
www.revealnews.org
Date: Oct. 28, 2017
By: Center for Investigative Reporting
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
3:17-cv-07204-EDL (N.D. Cal.)
IM-CA-0110-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/04/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint for Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
IM-CA-0110-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 12/19/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Amended Complaint for Injunctive Relief [ECF# 8]
IM-CA-0110-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/23/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Laporte, Elizabeth D. (N.D. Cal.) [Magistrate]
IM-CA-0110-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Baranetsky, Diana Victoria (New York)
IM-CA-0110-0001 | IM-CA-0110-0002 | IM-CA-0110-9000

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