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ACLU Found. of S. Cal. v. ICE, No. 22-04760, 2023 WL 5619710 (C.D. Cal. Aug. 29, 2023) (Kewalramani, Mag. J.)


ACLU Found. of S. Cal. v. ICE, No. 22-04760, 2023 WL 5619710 (C.D. Cal. Aug. 29, 2023) (Kewalramani, Mag. J.)

Re:  Request for records concerning treatment of hospitalized detainees and detainees released from custody prior to their death

Disposition:  Denying defendant’s motion for judgment on the pleadings

  • Procedural Requirements, Proper FOIA Requests:  The court finds that “Defendants' Motion fails . . . .”  “Defendants have not established that the individual requests in Plaintiff’s Request are vague or overbroad when Plaintiff’s Request is viewed broadly and liberally, . . . and when the Court construes Plaintiff’s allegations in Plaintiff’s favor, as it must at this stage of the litigation . . . .”  “Defendants argue that ‘most requests . . . do not request identifiable records at all but request “any and all” documents and “communications” “relating to,” “regarding,” “related to,” or that “identify” certain subjects.’”  “Defendants assert, and appeared to confirm during argument, that, categorically, ‘[r]equests that include language such as “relate in any way to” are too vague.’”  The court declines to approve such a broad standard and instead focuses on the factual situations concerning each request, for example, finding that “part one of Plaintiff’s Request as discussed above seeks information regarding Defendants’ communications as they specifically related to ‘the hospitalization, death, decision to release from custody, or release from custody’ of only four specific people . . . .”  Additionally, the court notes that “the fact that Defendants were able to interpret Plaintiff’s Request sufficiently enough to represent to the Court that they could complete their review and production of records by a particular time further suggests that Plaintiff’s Request was neither too vague nor overbroad.”
Court Decision Topic(s)
District Court opinions
Procedural Requirements, Proper FOIA Requests
Updated October 12, 2023