University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild v. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement IM-DC-0041
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-02596 ( D.D.C. )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Immigration and/or the Border
Special Collection Trump Administration FOIA cases
Attorney Organization National Immigration Project of the NLG
Case Summary
On December 5, 2017, the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) brought this suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Represented by private counsel, the plaintiff sued U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Department of ... read more >
On December 5, 2017, the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIPNLG) brought this suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Represented by private counsel, the plaintiff sued U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The plaintiff, a nonprofit organization promoting immigrants' rights, sought information on the defendants' use of mobile biometric devices and applications in immigration applications and enforcement. The complaint alleged that on March 17, 2017, the plaintiff and another organization, Mijente, had submitted a FOIA request to the defendants. The requests sought records concerning ICE's use of mobile biometric devices and applications, and DHS's investigations of civil rights or civil liberties in the use of these devices and applications. The complaint further alleged that, to date, the plaintiff had not received a substantive response from the defendants. The plaintiff sought a disclosure order under FOIA, legal fees, and expedited action. The case was assigned to Judge Royce C. Lamberth.

The parties engaged in back-and-forth litigation over document production for the next year.

On May 17, 2019, the parties filed a joint motion to stay the case to allow them to narrow the issues requiring further litigation. Specifically, the plaintiff requested time to more thoroughly assess the draft Vaughn Index, the documents prepared by agencies opposing FOIA requests, that had been provided by the defendants. The index must describe each document that has been withheld and must explain the agency's justification for nondisclosure. The court granted the motion on May 20. The parties then attempted to work together informally for several months to narrow the issues and work out which documents needed to be produced.

On December 11, 2019, the plaintiff filed a status report asking the court to start setting the defendants' schedule for producing documents, as the defendants had continuously failed to meet self-imposed deadlines.

On January 13, 2020, the parties filed a joint status report indicating that the defendants had provided additional documents and that they intended to continue resolving issues informally and without the need for the court's involvement.

On March 4, 2020, the parties filed their most recent joint status report, noting that the plaintiff was in the process of assessing the defendants' revised production of documents to determine whether any issues remained to be addressed through dispositive motions or otherwise.

The parties filed a joint status report on May 4, 2020 stipulating that the plaintiffs had finished assessing the defendants' Vaughn index entries. The plaintiffs stated they would notify the defendants of certain redactions they intended to challenge and which specific index entries they would challenge.

On July 1, 2020, the parties again filed a joint status report indicating that the plaintiffs needed additional time to notify the defendants of which entries they would challenge, and the defendants needed time to review the plaintiffs' submissions.

On September 18, 2020, the parties filed a joint stipulation of dismissal. The Clearinghouse doesn't have any documents explaining why the case was dismissed. This case is now closed.

Ava Morgenstern - 01/01/2018
Sam Kulhanek - 03/28/2020
Devon Schmidt - 10/22/2021


compress summary

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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
General
Confidentiality
Racial profiling
Record-keeping
Records Disclosure
Search policies
Immigration/Border
Admission - procedure
Constitutional rights
Deportation - procedure
Detention - procedures
ICE/DHS/INS raid
Status/Classification
Undocumented immigrants - rights and duties
Visas - procedures
Work authorization - procedures
Plaintiff Type
Non-profit NON-religious organization
Causes of Action Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. ยง 552
Defendant(s) U.S. Department of Homeland Security
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement
Plaintiff Description Immigrant rights' organization.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations National Immigration Project of the NLG
Class action status sought No
Class action status outcome Not sought
Filed Pro Se No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Document Production
Source of Relief None yet
Filed 12/05/2017
Case Closing Year 2020
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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  See this case at CourtListener.com (May provide additional documents and, for active cases, real-time alerts)
  Lawsuit Filed to Force ICE and DHS to Release Information on the Use of Mobile Biometric Devices during Raids and Deportations
www.nationalimmigrationproject.org
Date: Dec. 6, 2017
By: National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Unchecked DHS Fingerprinting Practice Moves Groups to Press for Transparency
www.mijente.net
Date: Mar. 29, 2017
By: Mijente
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Court Docket(s)
D.D.C.
09/18/2020
1:17-cv-2596
IM-DC-0041-9000.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
D.D.C.
12/05/2017
Complaint for Declaratory and Injunctive Relief [ECF# 1]
IM-DC-0041-0001.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D.D.C.
12/11/2019
Plaintiff's Status Report [ECF# 34]
IM-DC-0041-0002.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D.D.C.
01/13/2020
Joint Status Report [ECF# 36]
IM-DC-0041-0003.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D.D.C.
03/04/2020
Joint Status Report [ECF# 39]
IM-DC-0041-0004.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D.D.C.
05/04/2020
Joint Status Report [ECF# 40]
IM-DC-0041-0005.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
D.D.C.
06/30/2020
Joint Status Report [ECF# 41]
IM-DC-0041-0006.pdf | Detail
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
show all people docs
Judges Lamberth, Royce C. (FISC, D.D.C.) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Alrabe, Khaled (Massachusetts) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-9000
Davis, Kayla Marie (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0002 | IM-DC-0041-0003 | IM-DC-0041-0004 | IM-DC-0041-0005 | IM-DC-0041-0006 | IM-DC-0041-9000
Day, Jones (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0001 | IM-DC-0041-0002 | IM-DC-0041-0003 | IM-DC-0041-0004 | IM-DC-0041-0005 | IM-DC-0041-0006
Early, Cormac A. (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0001 | IM-DC-0041-9000
Marshall, C. Kevin (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0001 | IM-DC-0041-0002 | IM-DC-0041-0003 | IM-DC-0041-0004 | IM-DC-0041-0005 | IM-DC-0041-0006 | IM-DC-0041-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Caplen, Robert Aaron (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0004 | IM-DC-0041-0005 | IM-DC-0041-0006 | IM-DC-0041-9000
Liu, Jessie K. (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0003
Nebeker, William Mark (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0003 | IM-DC-0041-9000
Peterson, Benton G (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-9000
Shea, Timothy J (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0004 | IM-DC-0041-0005
Sherwin, Michael R. (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0006
Van Horn, Daniel F (District of Columbia) show/hide docs
IM-DC-0041-0003 | IM-DC-0041-0004 | IM-DC-0041-0005 | IM-DC-0041-0006

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