Case: Chen v. GEO

3:17-cv-05769 | U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

Filed Date: Sept. 26, 2017

Case Ongoing

Clearinghouse coding complete

Case Summary

On September 26, 2017, a former immigrant detainee of the Northwest Detention Center filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington. The case was assigned to Judge Robert J. Bryan. The plaintiff sued The GEO Group, Inc. (GEO), the for-profit corporation that operated the detention center, under state law, claiming that GEO’s policy of paying immigrant detainees involved in the federal Voluntary Work Program only $1 per day for their labor violated the Washi…

On September 26, 2017, a former immigrant detainee of the Northwest Detention Center filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington. The case was assigned to Judge Robert J. Bryan. The plaintiff sued The GEO Group, Inc. (GEO), the for-profit corporation that operated the detention center, under state law, claiming that GEO’s policy of paying immigrant detainees involved in the federal Voluntary Work Program only $1 per day for their labor violated the Washington Minimum Wage Act (MWA). The MWA set the minimum wage at $11 per hour. Represented by private counsel (Schroeter Goldmark & Bender; The Law Office of R. Andrew Free; and Sunbird Law), the plaintiff sought damages for lost wages.

On October 9, 2017, GEO filed a motion to dismiss the case for failure to state a claim. GEO alleged that federal law, which allowed for immigrant detainees to be paid $1 per day, preempted the MWA, a state law. The defendant also alleged that immigrant detainees did not count as employees under the MWA. On December 6, 2017, the court denied the defendant’s motion to dismiss. The court reasoned that federal law did not conflict with the MWA, so it did not preempt it. The MWA also stated only that state detainees were not employees; it said nothing about federal detainees, so the court reasoned that immigrant detainees may be employees. 287 F.Supp.3d 1158.

On December 20, 2017, the defendant served an answer to the complaint that contained several counterclaims and affirmative defenses. GEO claimed that the plaintiff would be unjustly enriched if paid minimum wage, as his costs of living during his detainment were paid for by the detention center, so it sought the costs and expenses it incurred in providing for the plaintiff during his detainment. It also sought declaratory relief. The plaintiff filed a motion to dismiss or strike most of the counterclaims and affirmative defenses on January 10, 2018. On February 28, 2018, the court denied most of the plaintiff's motion to dismiss, although it did strike five of the defendant’s fifteen affirmative defenses. 297 F.Supp.3d 1130.

On March 29, 2018, GEO filed another motion to dismiss the case, this one for failure to join required parties. GEO had a contract with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that controlled how it managed the detention center. It alleged that paying minimum wage when the standard for ICE’s Voluntary Work Program was $1 per day would violate that contract. Because they had a stake in the case’s outcome, GEO alleged that DHS and ICE needed to be joined as parties. However, the defendant also alleged that DHS and ICE could not be joined because they had immunity. So, GEO concluded that the case should be dismissed. On April 26, 2018, the court denied this motion to dismiss and held that DHS and ICE were not necessary parties because the contract did not directly conflict with the MWA. 2018 WL 1963669.

The plaintiff sought class certification on March 23, 2018. The proposed class would consist of all civil immigration detainees who participated in the Voluntary Work Program at the Northwest Detention Center at any time between September 26, 2014, and the date of final judgment in the case. However, after being deposed by the defendant, the plaintiff decided that it was not in his best interests to serve as a class representative; in his deposition, the plaintiff admitted to having a history of violent crime, which could prejudice the rest of the class. On April 30, 2018, GEO filed a motion to deny class certification with prejudice, and the plaintiff withdrew his motion for class certification the next day.

On June 13, 2018, two new plaintiffs who could more adequately represent the class were added, and the original plaintiff was terminated as a plaintiff (but remained a counter defendant to GEO's counterclaims). The plaintiffs filed an amended complaint to reflect this change. Eight days later, they filed a new motion for class certification.

On June 27, 2018, GEO moved to dismiss the amended complaint for failure to state a claim, lack of subject matter jurisdiction, and failure to join parties. On August 6, 2018, the court denied the defendant's motion to dismiss, reasoning that issues remained to be solved regarding the defendant's possible immunity as a contractor providing services to the federal government. The court further held that the defendant's other grounds for dismissal (preemption, failure to state a claim based on the inapplicability of the MWA, and failure to join required government parties) were unpersuasive. 2018 WL 4150909.

On the same day, the court granted the plaintiffs' motion for class certification. The court declined to make the finding that the class representatives could not represent the proposed class of detainees seeking for lost wages under the (MWA) because they lack work authorization and are thus "unemployable." The court further found that the proposed class satisfied the requirements for certification and thus certification was appropriate. The final certified class consisted of “[a]ll civil immigration detainees who participated in the Voluntary Work Program at the Northwest Detention Center at any time between September 26, 2014, and the date of final judgment in this matter.”

On August 23, 2018, the defendant filed a petition to appeal the order to certify class to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The defendant also appealed to the Ninth Circuit the August 6, 2018 order denying the defendant's motion to dismiss. In early November, the Ninth Circuit denied the defendant's petition to appeal the order granting class certification. A month later, the defendant-appellant moved to voluntarily dismiss its appeal of the district court's order denying the defendant's motion to dismiss. The Ninth Circuit granted this motion on December 10, 2018, and the appeal was dismissed.

For the first few months of 2019, activity in this suit consisted of litigation relating to various deadlines for trial dates and giving notice to class members.

On May 2, 2019, the defendant filed a motion to dismiss, stay, or consolidate related litigation. The defendant argued that the suit should be dismissed or stayed because "the harm plaintiffs seek to remedy is entirely duplicative" of the State of Washington’s companion case, Washington v. The GEO Group Inc., resulting in wasted time, effort, and costs. The defendant contended that without dismissal or staying of the suit or at least consolidating the two suits, it would be prejudiced by having to litigate the issues and incur costs twice.

In a May 28, 2019, oral hearing, the court denied the portion of the defendant's motion to dismiss or stay, and granted in part the motion for consolidation. The court ordered that the suits be consolidated on the issues of liability only. The issue of damages would remain separate.

On August 22, 2019, the United States filed a Statement of Interest in the Washington case, where it argued that the suit, seeking to impose the state minimum wage for individuals in federal immigration detention, violated intergovernmental immunity principles. The United States urged "the Court to find that the doctrine of intergovernmental immunity bars the State of Washington from enforcing the MWA against GEO," even though the court had earlier rejected the intergovernmental immunity argument.

The parties engaged in months of back-and-forth litigation, filing multiple motions in limine and litigating a variety of discovery issues.

On January 21, 2021, the court granted in part plaintiffs' motion to strike GEO's jury demand. It held that a jury trial would be held on the MWA issue, albeit bifurcated as to liability and damages. The same jury would preside over each proceeding. If GEO prevailed on the liability issue, the jury would be excused and the proceedings would continue as to injunctive relief on a non-jury basis. Unjust enrichment claims brought by the State of Washington, however, would be tried entirely without a jury.

The parties filed cross-motions for summary judgment, but the court denied each of them on April 7, 2020. 2020 WL 1689728. Four issues were before the court: (1) whether plaintiffs were "employees" under MWA; (2) whether GEO was entitled to intergovernmental immunity; (3) GEO’s defense of derivative immunity; and (4) GEO's affirmative defense for offset/unjust enrichment. Judge Bryan decided each of these issues in favor of the plaintiff.

After an 11-day trial and three days of jury deliberations, Judge Bryan declared a mistrial on June 17, 2021 because the jury was unable to reach a verdict. The court set a new trial date for October 12, 2021.

The defendants filed a motion for an interlocutory order, hoping that the Ninth Circuit would consider whether the district court's adopted the correct interpretation of the relevant statutory provisions in its April 7 order. On September 20, 2021, Judge Bryan denied the motion.

On October 29, 2021, following the second trial and jury deliberation, the jury entered a verdict against GEO and awarded the plaintiffs almost $17.3 million in backpay. The court entered judgment in favor of the plaintiffs on November 2, 2021. Shortly thereafter, the defendants moved to reduce the jury award and to stay enforcement of the judgment pending appeal. They also filed a renewed motion for judgment as a matter of law.

On December 8, 2021, the court granted the plaintiffs' earlier motion for pre-and post-judgment interest. Judge Bryan denied GEO's motion to reduce the jury award, as well as the renewed motion for judgment as a matter of law, but granted the defendants' motion to stay enforcement of the judgment pending appeal. A week later, the court awarded the plaintiffs over $1.5 million in attorneys' fees and costs.

GEO appealed the judgment to the Ninth Circuit on December 10, 2021. As of March 27, 2022, that appeal is pending.

Summary Authors

Rebecca Strauss (7/20/2018)

Aaron Gurley (1/22/2020)

Jordan Katz (11/6/2021)

Related Cases

Washington v. The GEO Group Inc., Western District of Washington (2017)

People

For PACER's information on parties and their attorneys, see: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6159152/parties/nwauzor-v-the-geo-group-inc/


Judge(s)

Bryan, Robert Jensen (Washington)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Berger, Adam J. (Washington)

Free, Robert Andrew (Tennessee)

Halm, Lindsay (Washington)

Roe, Rebecca Jane (Washington)

Theriot-Orr, Devin T. (Washington)

Whitehead, Jamal N. (Washington)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Angel, Allison N (Colorado)

Arango, Jacqueline M (Florida)

Armstrong, Shannon L (Oregon)

Judge(s)

Bryan, Robert Jensen (Washington)

Attorneys(s) for Plaintiff

Berger, Adam J. (Washington)

Free, Robert Andrew (Tennessee)

Halm, Lindsay (Washington)

Roe, Rebecca Jane (Washington)

Theriot-Orr, Devin T. (Washington)

Whitehead, Jamal N. (Washington)

Attorneys(s) for Defendant

Angel, Allison N (Colorado)

Arango, Jacqueline M (Florida)

Armstrong, Shannon L (Oregon)

Asai, Kristin Mariko (Oregon)

Barnacle, Colin L (Colorado)

Calabrese, Wayne Howard (Florida)

Calhoun, Ashley E (Colorado)

Castillo, Rubén (Illinois)

Cooper, Charles Justin (District of Columbia)

D'Ambra, Andrea (New York)

Deacon, Charles A (Texas)

Donohue, John M (Oregon)

Eby, Christopher J (Colorado)

Ellison, Dawn A (District of Columbia)

Emery, Mark Thomas (District of Columbia)

Kane, Tiernan (District of Columbia)

Kim, William J (Washington)

Kirk, Michael W. (District of Columbia)

Mell, Joan K. (Washington)

Negron, Joseph Jr (Florida)

Pusateri, Michael (District of Columbia)

Roundtree, Al (Washington)

Scheffey, Adrienne (Colorado)

Schipma, Scott A (District of Columbia)

Short, Carolyn P. (Pennsylvania)

Silverman, Lawrence D (Florida)

Smith, Douglas Edward (Washington)

Stouck, Jerry (District of Columbia)

Other Attorney(s)

Bates, Christopher A (District of Columbia)

Davis, Ethan P. (District of Columbia)

Haas, Alexander K (District of Columbia)

Hunt, Joseph H. (District of Columbia)

Lynch, Christopher M (District of Columbia)

Snead, Jacqueline E. Coleman (District of Columbia)

Documents in the Clearinghouse

Document

3:17-cv-05769

Docket [PACER]

Chen v. The GEO Group Inc.

Nov. 5, 2021

Nov. 5, 2021

Docket
1

3:17-cv-05769

Class Action Complaint for Damages

Chen v. The GEO Group Inc.

Sept. 26, 2017

Sept. 26, 2017

Complaint
28

3:17-cv-05769

Order on Defendant The GEO Group, Inc.'s Motion to Dismiss Class Action Complaint for Damages

Chen v. The GEO Group Inc.

287 F.Supp.3d 1158

Dec. 6, 2017

Dec. 6, 2017

Order/Opinion
40

3:17-cv-05769

Order on Plaintiff's Motion to Dismiss or Strike Defendant's Counterclaims and Affirmative Defenses

Chen v. The GEO Group Inc.

297 F.Supp.3d 1130, 2018 WL 1083852

Feb. 28, 2018

Feb. 28, 2018

Order/Opinion
67

3:17-cv-05769

Order on Defendant The GEO Group Inc.'s Motion for Order of Dismissal Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties

Chen v. The GEO Group Inc.

2018 WL 1963669

April 26, 2018

April 26, 2018

Order/Opinion
114

3:17-cv-05769

Order on Plaintiffs' Motion for Class Certification and Defendant's Motion to Deny Class Certification

Nwauzor v. GEO

Aug. 6, 2018

Aug. 6, 2018

Order/Opinion
175

3:17-cv-05769

Supplement to Oral Ruling

Nwauzor v. GEO

May 28, 2019

May 28, 2019

Order/Opinion
185

3:17-cv-05769

Statement of Interest of the United States

Washington v. GEO

Aug. 22, 2019

Aug. 22, 2019

Pleading / Motion / Brief
280

3:17-cv-05769

Order On Cross-Motions For Summary Judgment

Nwauzor v. The GEO Group

2020 WL 1689728

April 7, 2020

April 7, 2020

Order/Opinion

Resources

Docket

See docket on RECAP: https://www.courtlistener.com/docket/6159152/nwauzor-v-the-geo-group-inc/

Last updated June 9, 2022, 3:23 a.m.

ECF Number Description Date Link Date / Link
1

COMPLAINT against defendant The GEO Group Inc (Receipt # 0981-5031071), filed by Chao Chen. (Attachments: # 1 Summons, # 2 Civil Cover Sheet)(Whitehead, Jamal) Modified on 9/28/2017 (GMR). (Entered: 09/26/2017)

1 Summons

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2 Civil Cover Sheet

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Sept. 26, 2017

Sept. 26, 2017

RECAP

Judge Robert J. Bryan added. (GMR)

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

PACER

Add and Terminate Judges

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

PACER

Motion Calendar

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

PACER
2

Summons(es) Electronically Issued as to defendant(s) The GEO Group Inc. (GMR) (Entered: 09/28/2017)

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

RECAP
3

ORDER REGARDING DISCOVERY AND DEPOSITIONS. Authorized by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 09/28/2017)

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

RECAP
4

ORDER REGARDING INITIAL DISCLOSURES AND JOINT STATUS REPORT. FRCP 26f Conference Deadline is 12/13/2017, Initial Disclosure Deadline is 12/20/2017, Joint Status Report due by 12/27/2017. Authorized by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 09/28/2017)

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

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JSR due 12/27/2017. (JL)

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

PACER
5

NOTICE of Appearance by attorney Joan K Mell on behalf of Defendant The GEO Group Inc. (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 09/28/2017)

Sept. 28, 2017

Sept. 28, 2017

RECAP
6

APPLICATION OF ATTORNEY R. ANDREW FREE FOR LEAVE TO APPEAR PRO HAC VICE for Plaintiff Chao Chen (Fee Paid) Receipt No. 0981-5035434 (Berger, Adam) (Entered: 09/29/2017)

Sept. 29, 2017

Sept. 29, 2017

RECAP
7

ORDER on the 6 Application for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice. The Court ADMITS Attorney R Andrew Free for Chao Chen, by Clerk William M McCool. (No document associated with this docket entry, text only.)NOTE TO COUNSEL: Local counsel agrees to sign all filings and to be prepared to handle the matter, including the trial thereof, in the event the applicant is unable to be present on any date scheduled by the court, pursuant to LCR 83.1(d).(CMG) (Entered: 09/29/2017)

Sept. 29, 2017

Sept. 29, 2017

PACER
8

MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc. Oral Argument Requested. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) Noting Date 11/3/2017, (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 10/09/2017)

1 Proposed Order

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Oct. 9, 2017

Oct. 9, 2017

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9

STATEMENT OF RELATED CASE by Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 10/09/2017)

Oct. 9, 2017

Oct. 9, 2017

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10

APPLICATION OF ATTORNEY Charles A. Deacon FOR LEAVE TO APPEAR PRO HAC VICE for Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Fee Paid) Receipt No. 0981-5049153 (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 10/11/2017)

Oct. 11, 2017

Oct. 11, 2017

RECAP
11

APPLICATION OF ATTORNEY Mark Emery FOR LEAVE TO APPEAR PRO HAC VICE for Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Fee Paid) Receipt No. 0981-5049175 (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 10/11/2017)

Oct. 11, 2017

Oct. 11, 2017

RECAP
12

ORDER on the 10 Application for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice. The Court ADMITS Attorney Charles A Deacon for The GEO Group Inc, by Clerk William M McCool. No document associated with this docket entry, text only.NOTE TO COUNSEL: Local counsel agrees to sign all filings and to be prepared to handle the matter, including the trial thereof, in the event the applicant is unable to be present on any date scheduled by the court, pursuant to LCR 83.1(d).(GMR) (Entered: 10/11/2017)

Oct. 11, 2017

Oct. 11, 2017

PACER
13

ORDER on the 11 Application for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice. The Court ADMITS Attorney Mark Emery for The GEO Group Inc, by Clerk William M McCool. No document associated with this docket entry, text only.NOTE TO COUNSEL: Local counsel agrees to sign all filings and to be prepared to handle the matter, including the trial thereof, in the event the applicant is unable to be present on any date scheduled by the court, pursuant to LCR 83.1(d).(GMR) (Entered: 10/11/2017)

Oct. 11, 2017

Oct. 11, 2017

PACER
14

DEMAND for JURY TRIAL by Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 10/12/2017)

Oct. 12, 2017

Oct. 12, 2017

RECAP
15

RESPONSE, by Plaintiff Chao Chen, to 8 MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM . (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 10/30/2017)

Oct. 30, 2017

Oct. 30, 2017

RECAP
16

REPLY, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, TO RESPONSE to 8 MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 11/03/2017)

Nov. 3, 2017

Nov. 3, 2017

PACER
17

ORDER Setting Hearing on Motion 8 MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM : Motion Hearing set for 11/20/2017 at 11:00 AM in Courtroom A before Judge Robert J. Bryan.Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 11/07/2017)

Nov. 7, 2017

Nov. 7, 2017

PACER
18

WAIVER OF SERVICE of summons upon defendant The GEO Group Inc mailed on 10/13/2017 (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 11/15/2017)

Nov. 15, 2017

Nov. 15, 2017

PACER
19

DECLARATION OF JOAN K. MELL ATTACHING GEO-ICE CONTRACT WITH LIMITED TRADE SECRET REDACTIONS by Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 11/17/2017)

Nov. 17, 2017

Nov. 17, 2017

PACER
20

MOTION to Seal LIMITED REDACTED PAGES OF THE GEO-ICE CONTRACT, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) Noting Date 11/17/2017, (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 11/17/2017)

1 Proposed Order

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Nov. 17, 2017

Nov. 17, 2017

PACER
21

MINUTE ENTRY for proceedings held before Judge Robert J. Bryan- Dep Clerk: Tyler Campbell; Pla Counsel: Ptf Chen: Andrew Free, Adam Berger, Jamal Whitehead, Devin Theriot-Orr, Lindsay Halm; Ptf State of WA: Marsha Chien, La Rond Baker; Def Counsel: Joan Mell, Charles Deacon, Mark Emery; CR: Angela Nicolavo; Motion Hearing held on 11/20/2017 re 8 MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM filed by The GEO Group Inc. Argument by parties. Order to be issued. (TC) Modified on 11/21/2017 (SP). (Entered: 11/20/2017)

Nov. 20, 2017

Nov. 20, 2017

PACER
22

MINUTE ORDER. Pursuant to Western District of Washington Local Civil Rule 7(d)(2), the MOTION to Seal LIMITED REDACTED PAGES OF THE GEO-ICE CONTRACT (Dkt. 20 ) is hereby renoted to 12/1/2017. Authorized by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 11/21/2017)

Nov. 21, 2017

Nov. 21, 2017

PACER
23

RESPONSE, by Plaintiff Chao Chen, to 20 MOTION to Seal LIMITED REDACTED PAGES OF THE GEO-ICE CONTRACT. Oral Argument Requested. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit A - Venturella Supplemental Declaration)(Free, R) (Entered: 11/29/2017)

1 Exhibit A - Venturella Supplemental Declaration

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Nov. 29, 2017

Nov. 29, 2017

PACER
24

DECLARATION OF JOAN K. MELL ATTACHING GEO-ICE AMENDMENTS TO THE 2015 CONTRACT by Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 11/30/2017)

Nov. 30, 2017

Nov. 30, 2017

PACER
25

REPLY, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, TO RESPONSE to 20 MOTION to Seal LIMITED REDACTED PAGES OF THE GEO-ICE CONTRACT (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 12/01/2017)

Dec. 1, 2017

Dec. 1, 2017

PACER
26

DECLARATION of DAVID VENTURELLA IN SUPPORT OF GEO'S MOTION TO FILE LIMITED REDACTED PAGES IN CAMERA AND UNDER SEAL filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 20 MOTION to Seal LIMITED REDACTED PAGES OF THE GEO-ICE CONTRACT (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 12/01/2017)

Dec. 1, 2017

Dec. 1, 2017

RECAP
27

NOTICE OF INTENT TO FILE SURREPLY re 26 Declaration, 25 Reply to Response to Motion ; filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen. (Free, R) (Entered: 12/01/2017)

Dec. 1, 2017

Dec. 1, 2017

PACER
28

ORDER ON DEFENDANT THE GEO GROUP, INC.'S MOTION TO DISMISS CLASS ACTION COMPLAINT FOR DAMAGES, denying 8 . Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 12/06/2017)

Dec. 6, 2017

Dec. 6, 2017

RECAP
29

NOTICE regarding sur-reply by Plaintiff under LCR 7(g)(1) re 26 Declaration, 25 Reply to Response to Motion ; filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen. (Free, R) (Entered: 12/06/2017)

Dec. 6, 2017

Dec. 6, 2017

PACER
30

ORDER granting in part and denying in part 20 Motion to Seal. Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 12/11/2017)

Dec. 11, 2017

Dec. 11, 2017

RECAP
31

NOTICE OF FILING OF OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT of Example- Motion Hearing held on 11/20/2017 before Judge Robert J. Bryan.Parties have seven (7) calendar days to file with the court a Notice of Intent to Request Redaction of this transcript. If no such Notice is filed, the transcript may be made remotely electronically available to the public without redaction after 90 calendar days.Transcript may be viewed at the court public terminal or purchased through the Court Reporter/Transcriber before the deadline for Release of Transcript Restriction. After that date it may be obtained through PACER. Information regarding the policy can be found on the court's website at www.wawd.uscourts.gov.To purchase a copy of the transcript, contact court reporter Angela Nicolavo, angela_nicolavo@wawd.uscourts.gov, 253-882-3832. Release of Transcript Restriction set for 3/12/2018, (AN) (Entered: 12/11/2017)

Dec. 11, 2017

Dec. 11, 2017

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32

CORPORATE DISCLOSURE STATEMENT identifying Other Affiliate Vanguard Group, Inc., Other Affiliate BlackRock Fund Advisors for The GEO Group Inc. Filed pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P 7.1. Filed by The GEO Group Inc (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 12/19/2017)

Dec. 19, 2017

Dec. 19, 2017

RECAP
33

ANSWER to 1 Complaint, COUNTERCLAIM against plaintiff Chao Chen by The GEO Group Inc.(Mell, Joan) (Entered: 12/20/2017)

Dec. 20, 2017

Dec. 20, 2017

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34

JOINT STATUS REPORT signed by all parties estimated Trial Days: 15. Filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen.(Free, R) (Entered: 12/28/2017)

Dec. 28, 2017

Dec. 28, 2017

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35

MINUTE ORDER SETTING TRIAL AND PRETRIAL DATES; Length of Trial: *FIFTEEN DAYS*. Jury Trial is set for 3/4/2019 at 09:30 AM in Courtroom A before Judge Robert J. Bryan. Joinder of Parties due by 3/30/2018, Expert Witness Disclosure/Reports under FRCP 26(a)(2) due by 9/5/2018, Motions due by 10/15/2018, Discovery completed by 11/5/2018, Dispositive motions due by 12/4/2018, Motions in Limine due by 2/4/2019, Pretrial Order due by 2/15/2019, Pretrial Conference set for 2/22/2019 at 08:30 AM in Courtroom A before Judge Robert J. Bryan. Trial briefs to be submitted by 2/22/2019, Proposed voir dire/jury instructions due by 2/22/2019. s/Tyler Campbell, as directed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (TC) (Entered: 12/29/2017)

Dec. 29, 2017

Dec. 29, 2017

PACER
36

AMENDED MINUTE ORDER SETTING TRIAL AND PRETRIAL DATES: Added Deadline for FILING motion for class certification - March 25, 2018. s/Tyler Campbell, as directed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (TC) (Entered: 01/05/2018)

Jan. 5, 2018

Jan. 5, 2018

PACER
37

MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM, filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen. Oral Argument Requested. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) Noting Date 2/2/2018, (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 01/10/2018)

1 Proposed Order

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Jan. 10, 2018

Jan. 10, 2018

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38

RESPONSE, by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, to 37 MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM . Oral Argument Requested. (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 01/29/2018)

Jan. 29, 2018

Jan. 29, 2018

PACER
39

REPLY, filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen, TO RESPONSE to 37 MOTION TO DISMISS FOR FAILURE TO STATE A CLAIM (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 02/02/2018)

Feb. 2, 2018

Feb. 2, 2018

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40

ORDER ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION TO DISMISS OR STRIKE DEFENDANT'S COUNTERCLAIMS AND AFFIRMATIVE DEFENSES, granting in part and denying in part 37 Motion. Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 02/28/2018)

Feb. 28, 2018

Feb. 28, 2018

RECAP
41

APPLICATION OF ATTORNEY D'Ambra, Andrea FOR LEAVE TO APPEAR PRO HAC VICE for Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Fee Paid) Receipt No. 0981-5235627 (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 03/12/2018)

March 12, 2018

March 12, 2018

PACER
42

ORDER on the 41 Application for Leave to Appear Pro Hac Vice. The Court ADMITS Attorney Andrea D'Ambra for The GEO Group Inc, by Clerk William M McCool. (No document associated with this docket entry, text only.)NOTE TO COUNSEL: Local counsel agrees to sign all filings and to be prepared to handle the matter, including the trial thereof, in the event the applicant is unable to be present on any date scheduled by the court, pursuant to LCR 83.1(d).(GMR) (Entered: 03/13/2018)

March 13, 2018

March 13, 2018

PACER
43

ANSWER to 33 Answer to Complaint, Counterclaim by Chao Chen.(Theriot-Orr, Devin) (Entered: 03/14/2018)

March 14, 2018

March 14, 2018

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44

MOTION to Certify Class, filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen. Oral Argument Requested. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) Noting Date 4/20/2018, (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

1 Proposed Order

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March 23, 2018

March 23, 2018

PACER
45

DECLARATION of JAMAL N. WHITEHEAD filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen re 44 MOTION to Certify Class (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2, # 3 Exhibit 3, # 4 Exhibit 4, # 5 Exhibit 5, # 6 Exhibit 6)(Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

1 Exhibit 1

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2 Exhibit 2

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3 Exhibit 3

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4 Exhibit 4

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5 Exhibit 5

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6 Exhibit 6

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March 23, 2018

March 23, 2018

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46

DECLARATION of DEVIN THERIOT-ORR filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen re 44 MOTION to Certify Class (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018

March 23, 2018

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47

DECLARATION of ANDREW FREE filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen re 44 MOTION to Certify Class (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018

March 23, 2018

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48

PLEASE Disregard DECLARATION of CHAO CHEN filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen re 44 MOTION to Certify Class (Whitehead, Jamal) Modified on 3/26/2018: document stricken at the request of filer; re-filed with exhibits as ECF #49. (CMG). (Entered: 03/23/2018)

March 23, 2018

March 23, 2018

PACER
49

DECLARATION of CHAO CHEN W EXHIBITS filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen re 44 MOTION to Certify Class (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, SEALED # 2 Exhibit 2, SEALED # 3 Exhibit 3, SEALED # 4 Exhibit 4)(Whitehead, Jamal) Modified on 3/30/2018: exhibits sealed as they contain personal identifiers (CMG). (Entered: 03/23/2018)

1 Exhibit 1

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March 23, 2018

March 23, 2018

RECAP

NOTICE of Docket Text Modification re 48 Declaration of Chao Chen: document stricken at the request of filer; re-filed with exhibits as ECF #49 (CMG)

March 26, 2018

March 26, 2018

PACER

Notice of Docket Text Modification

March 26, 2018

March 26, 2018

PACER
50

REDACTED DOCUMENT: Exhibits 2, 3, 4 to the PRAECIPE to attach document (Praecipe re exhibits) to the 49 Declaration by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 3, # 2 Exhibit 4)(Whitehead, Jamal) Modified on 3/30/2018: At filers request, text language edited to correct the description (CMG). (Entered: 03/26/2018)

1 Exhibit 3

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2 Exhibit 4

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March 26, 2018

March 26, 2018

PACER
51

MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc. Oral Argument Requested. Noting Date 4/20/2018, (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 03/29/2018)

March 29, 2018

March 29, 2018

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52

DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 51 MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 03/29/2018)

March 29, 2018

March 29, 2018

PACER

Notice to Filer

March 30, 2018

March 30, 2018

PACER

NOTICE TO FILER re Exhibits 2, 3, 4 attached to the 49 Declaration of Chao Chen. These documents contain personal identifiers that must be redacted pursuant to Local Civil Rule 5.2 and FRCP 5.2. You are required to re-file a redacted version of your document using the event "Redacted Document" located in the Other Documents category. This event will allow you to link back to your original filing and will not affect your original filing date. Pursuant to LCR 5.2 and FRCP 5.2, the document(s) have been administratively sealed by the Court. (CMG)

March 30, 2018

March 30, 2018

PACER

Notice of Docket Text Modification

March 30, 2018

March 30, 2018

PACER

NOTICE of Docket Text Modification re 50 Praecipe to Attach Document: at the filer's request, text language edited to correct the description. (CMG)

March 30, 2018

March 30, 2018

PACER
53

PRAECIPE re 51 MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties SIGNED SIGNATURE PAGE by Defendant The GEO Group Inc (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/04/2018)

April 4, 2018

April 4, 2018

PACER
54

MOTION For Relief From Deadline, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc. Noting Date 4/13/2018, (Mell, Joan) Modified on 4/6/2018 (SP). (Entered: 04/05/2018)

April 5, 2018

April 5, 2018

PACER
55

DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 54 MOTION for Relief For Relief From Deadline (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/05/2018)

April 5, 2018

April 5, 2018

PACER
56

RESPONSE, by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen, to 54 MOTION for Relief For Relief From Deadline. (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 04/11/2018)

April 11, 2018

April 11, 2018

PACER
57

DECLARATION of JAMAL N. WHITEHEAD filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen re 54 MOTION for Relief For Relief From Deadline (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 04/11/2018)

April 11, 2018

April 11, 2018

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58

REPLY, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, TO RESPONSE to 54 MOTION for Relief For Relief From Deadline (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/13/2018)

April 13, 2018

April 13, 2018

PACER
59

Second DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 54 MOTION for Relief For Relief From Deadline (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/13/2018)

April 13, 2018

April 13, 2018

PACER
60

ORDER ON DEFENDANT THE GEO GROUP INC.'S MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM DEADLINE; ORDER SETTING DEADLINES AND ORAL ARGUMENT, denying 54 Motion for Relief; Setting Oral Argument on 51 MOTION to Dismiss for 4/24/18 at 9:00 a.m.; renoting 44 MOTION to Certify Class to 5/7/18. Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 04/13/2018)

April 13, 2018

April 13, 2018

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61

Amended DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 54 MOTION for Relief For Relief From Deadline (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/13/2018)

April 13, 2018

April 13, 2018

PACER
62

RESPONSE, by Plaintiff Chao Chen, to 51 MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties. Oral Argument Requested. (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 04/16/2018)

April 16, 2018

April 16, 2018

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63

DECLARATION of Jamal Whitehead filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen re 51 MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 04/16/2018)

April 16, 2018

April 16, 2018

PACER
64

REPLY, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, TO RESPONSE to 51 MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/20/2018)

April 20, 2018

April 20, 2018

PACER
65

MINUTE ENTRY for proceedings held before Judge Robert J. Bryan- Dep Clerk: Tyler Campbell; Pla Counsel: Jamal Whitehead, Andrew Free, Adam Berger, Lindsay Halm, Devin Theriot-Orr; Def Counsel: Joan Mell, Charles Deacon; CR: Debbie Zurn; Time of Hearing: 9:00; Courtroom: A; Motion Hearing held on 4/24/2018 re 51 MOTION to Dismiss Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties filed by The GEO Group Inc. Argument by Defendant, Plaintiff State of Washington, and Plaintiff Chen. Rebuttal by Defendant. Order(s) to be issued at a later date. (Motion hearing held in conjunction with related case C17-5806.) (TC) (Entered: 04/24/2018)

April 24, 2018

April 24, 2018

PACER
66

MINUTE ENTRY for proceedings held before Judge Robert J. Bryan- Dep Clerk: Tyler Campbell; Pla Counsel: Jamal Whitehead, Andrew Free; Def Counsel: Joan Mell, Charles Deacon; Time of Hearing: 1:00 pm; Telephone Conference held on 4/25/2018. Plaintiff's counsel brings issue to Court of scope of inquiry to Plaintiff at deposition. Court rules that Defendants may ask questions inquired about. (TC) (Entered: 04/25/2018)

April 25, 2018

April 25, 2018

PACER
67

ORDER on 51 Defendant The GEO Group Inc.'s Motion for Order of Dismissal Based on Plaintiff's Failure to Join Required Government Parties by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (TC) (Entered: 04/26/2018)

April 26, 2018

April 26, 2018

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68

NOTICE OF FILING OF OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPT of Motion Hearing held on 4/24/2018 before Judge Robert J. Bryan.Parties have seven (7) calendar days to file with the court a Notice of Intent to Request Redaction of this transcript. If no such Notice is filed, the transcript may be made remotely electronically available to the public without redaction after 90 calendar days.Transcript may be viewed at the court public terminal or purchased through the Court Reporter/Transcriber before the deadline for Release of Transcript Restriction. After that date it may be obtained through PACER. Information regarding the policy can be found on the court's website at www.wawd.uscourts.gov.To purchase a copy of the transcript, contact court reporter Debbie Zurn, debbie_zurn@wawd.uscourts.gov, 206-370-8504. Release of Transcript Restriction set for 7/26/2018, (DZ) (Entered: 04/27/2018)

April 27, 2018

April 27, 2018

RECAP
69

MOTION To Deny Class Certification With Prejudice, filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc. Oral Argument Requested. Noting Date 5/25/2018, (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/30/2018)

April 30, 2018

April 30, 2018

PACER
70

DECLARATION of Michael Heye filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 69 MOTION To Deny Class Certification With Prejudice (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/30/2018)

April 30, 2018

April 30, 2018

PACER
71

DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 69 MOTION To Deny Class Certification With Prejudice (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 04/30/2018)

April 30, 2018

April 30, 2018

PACER
72

NOTICE to Withdraw Pending Motion re 44 MOTION to Certify Class ; by Plaintiff Chao Chen. (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 05/01/2018)

May 1, 2018

May 1, 2018

PACER
73

MOTION for Relief from Deadlines and for status Conference, filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen. (Attachments: # 1 Proposed Order) Noting Date 5/11/2018, (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 05/01/2018)

1 Proposed Order

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May 1, 2018

May 1, 2018

PACER
74

DECLARATION of Jamal Whitehead in Support of Plaintiff's Motion for Relief from Deadlines and for Status Conference filed by Plaintiff Chao Chen re 73 MOTION for Relief from Deadlines and for status Conference (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 05/01/2018)

May 1, 2018

May 1, 2018

PACER
75

RESPONSE, by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, to 73 MOTION for Relief from Deadlines and for status Conference. (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 05/09/2018)

May 9, 2018

May 9, 2018

RECAP
76

REPLY, filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen, TO RESPONSE to 73 MOTION for Relief from Deadlines and for status Conference (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 05/11/2018)

May 11, 2018

May 11, 2018

RECAP
77

ORDER ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR RELIEF FROM DEADLINES AND FOR STATUS CONFERENCE, granting in part and denying in part 73 Motion for Relief, renoting 69 MOTION To Deny Class Certification With Prejudice to 7/13/2018. Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan. (JL) (Entered: 05/15/2018)

May 15, 2018

May 15, 2018

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78

MOTION to Amend 1 Complaint,, filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen. (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 1, # 2 Exhibit 2, # 3 Proposed Order) Noting Date 6/8/2018, (Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 05/24/2018)

1 Exhibit 1

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2 Exhibit 2

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3 Proposed Order

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May 24, 2018

May 24, 2018

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79

RESPONSE, by Defendant The GEO Group Inc, to 78 MOTION to Amend 1 Complaint,. (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 06/04/2018)

June 4, 2018

June 4, 2018

PACER
80

DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 78 MOTION to Amend 1 Complaint, (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 06/04/2018)

June 4, 2018

June 4, 2018

PACER
81

Supplemental DECLARATION of Joan K. Mell filed by Defendant The GEO Group Inc re 78 MOTION to Amend 1 Complaint, (Mell, Joan) (Entered: 06/05/2018)

June 5, 2018

June 5, 2018

PACER
82

REPLY, filed by Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Chao Chen, TO RESPONSE to 78 MOTION to Amend 1 Complaint, (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit 3, # 2 Exhibit 4)(Whitehead, Jamal) (Entered: 06/08/2018)

1 Exhibit 3

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2 Exhibit 4

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June 8, 2018

June 8, 2018

RECAP

Add and Terminate Parties

June 13, 2018

June 13, 2018

PACER

Docket Annotation

June 13, 2018

June 13, 2018

PACER
83

ORDER ON PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO AMEND CLASS ACTION COMPLAINT, granting 78 Motion to Amend. Counsel is directed to e-file their Amended Complaint (Dkt. [82-1]). Signed by Judge Robert J. Bryan.(JL) (Entered: 06/13/2018)

June 13, 2018

June 13, 2018

RECAP

Party Ugochukwu Goodluck Nwauzor and Fernando Aguirre-Urbina added pursuant to the First Amended Class Action Complaint for Damages. (ECF #84) (CMG)

June 13, 2018

June 13, 2018

PACER
84

AMENDED COMPLAINT against defendant(s) The GEO Group Inc, filed by Ugochukwu Goodluck Nwauzor and Fernando Aguirre-Urbina Chao Chen.(Whitehead, Jamal) Modified on 6/19/2018: corrected the filer names (CMG). (Entered: 06/13/2018)

June 13, 2018

June 13, 2018

RECAP

NOTICE TO PARIES: the case name has updated as follows: Nwauzor et al v. The GEO Group Inc. (GMR)

June 13, 2018

June 13, 2018

PACER
85

NOTICE of Appearance by attorney Meena Pallipamu Menter on behalf of Counter Defendant Chao Chen, Plaintiff Ugochukwu Goodluck Nwauzor Chao Chen. (Menter, Meena) Modified on 6/19/2018: corrected the party being represented (CMG). (Entered: 06/18/2018)

June 18, 2018

June 18, 2018

PACER

NOTICE of Docket Text Modification re 85 Notice of Appearance : corrected the name of the party being represented by counsel. (CMG)

June 19, 2018

June 19, 2018

PACER

Case Details

State / Territory: Washington

Case Type(s):

Criminal Justice (Other)

Special Collection(s):

Immigrant Detention Labor Issues

Key Dates

Filing Date: Sept. 26, 2017

Case Ongoing: Yes

Plaintiffs

Plaintiff Description:

All civil immigration detainees who participated in the Voluntary Work Program at the Northwest Detention Center at any time between September 26, 2014, and the date of final judgment in this matter.

Plaintiff Type(s):

Private Plaintiff

Public Interest Lawyer: No

Filed Pro Se: No

Class Action Sought: Yes

Class Action Outcome: Granted

Defendants

The GEO Group, Inc., Private Entity/Person

Case Details

Causes of Action:

State law

Declaratory Judgment Act, 28 U.S.C. § 2201

Availably Documents:

Trial Court Docket

Complaint (any)

Monetary Relief

Any published opinion

Outcome

Prevailing Party: Plaintiff

Nature of Relief:

Attorneys fees

Damages

Source of Relief:

Litigation

Amount Defendant Pays: $18,883,584

Issues

General:

Conditions of confinement

Forced labor

Placement in detention facilities

Work release or work assignments

Type of Facility:

Non-government for profit

Immigration/Border:

Detention - conditions