University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Muslim Advocates v. U.S. Department of Justice IM-DC-0055
Docket / Court 1:18-cv-01967-RC ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Attorney Organization Muslim Advocates
Case Summary
On August 23, 2018, Muslim Advocates filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the United States Department of Justice [DOJ] and United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE]. The complaint alleged that the defendants improperly withheld ... read more >
On August 23, 2018, Muslim Advocates filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia against the United States Department of Justice [DOJ] and United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement [ICE]. The complaint alleged that the defendants improperly withheld information in violation of the Freedom of Information Act [FOIA], 5 U.S.C. § 552(a), and sought declaratory and injunctive relief. Muslim Advocates had requested information from both defendants regarding Operation Janus, where the DOJ, in conjunction with information agencies, reviewed the files of naturalized citizens and began intensive denaturalization efforts.

The plaintiff requested information from both defendants on January 11, 2018. The Civil Division of the DOJ denied the request in full on January 19, 2018, claiming that the release of the documents would be "reasonably expected" to interfere with law enforcement. The DOJ did not explain their reasoning for this determination. The plaintiff then requested a Vaughn index, in which the government provides an itemized index of withheld documents and justification for doing so. The DOJ did not respond to this request. On February 9, 2018, ICE informed the plaintiff that the scope of the request was too broad, and thus did not process the FOIA request. Even after the plaintiff amended its request for information on several occasions, ICE has not released any of the requested documents.

The case was assigned to Judge Rudolph Contreras, and is ongoing as of September 29, 2018.

Elizabeth Heise - 09/29/2018


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Discrimination-basis
Immigration status
General
Records Disclosure
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit religious organization
Causes of Action Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. § 552
Defendant(s) United States Department of Justice
United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Plaintiff Description A non-profit organization that works to ensure civil rights for Americans of all faiths through legal advocacy, litigation, policy engagement, and civic education.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations Muslim Advocates
Class action status sought No
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief None yet
Source of Relief None yet
Filing Year 2018
Case Ongoing Yes
Docket(s)
1:18-cv-1967 (D.D.C.)
IM-DC-0055-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 09/27/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
IM-DC-0055-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 08/23/2018
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Contreras, Rudolph (D.D.C.)
IM-DC-0055-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Azmi, Nimra H. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0055-0001
Shebaya, Sirine (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0055-0001 | IM-DC-0055-9000
Smith, Johnathan James (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0055-0001 | IM-DC-0055-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Walker, Johnny Hillary III (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0055-9000

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