this information, and neither has plaintiff offered any justification.
Finally, this exemption is routinely invoked to withhold the identities of law enforcement personnel. See Lesar, supra, 636 F.2d at 487; see also Stern v. FBI, 237 U.S. App. D.C. 302, 737 F.2d 84, 94 (D.C. Cir. 1984). The agency sees two sources of damage if the names of law enforcement personnel connected with this investigation are released. First, agents might be harassed or subjected to counter surveillance. Garmon Affidavit at p. 8. Second, disclosure may well jeopardize the effectiveness of the agents in the course of their current investigations. Id. In addition, the agents' privacy interests, in this case, clearly outweigh any possible public interest in disclosure.
The agency has invoked Exemption 7(D) to withhold information gathered from private citizens, provided by private corporations, or supplied by state and local law enforcement agencies and to protect the identities of confidential informants. See Garmon Affidavit at pp. 10-11. Exemption 7(D) applies, in part, to information that "could reasonably be expected to disclose the identity of a confidential source, including a State, local, or foreign agency or authority or any private institution which furnished information on a confidential basis, and, in the case of a record or information compiled by criminal law enforcement authority in the course of a criminal investigation." 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(7)(D).
The Secret Service considers the information it received from private citizens and private corporations to be confidential. Garmon Affidavit at p. 10. This kind of information may be withheld pursuant to Exemption 7(D). See Shaw v. FBI, 242 U.S. App. D.C. 36, 749 F.2d 58, 62 (D.C. Cir. 1984). To the extent that release of this information would reveal the identities of confidential sources, then this exemption has been properly invoked. See supra; Birch v. United States Postal Service, 256 U.S. App. D.C. 128, 803 F.2d 1206, 1212 (D.C. Cir. 1986). Finally, the information supplied by state and local law enforcement agencies was provided with the understanding that it would remain confidential. Garmon Affidavit at p. 11. Therefore, Exemption 7(D) coverage is appropriate. See Lesar, supra, 636 F.2d at 491.
Finally, the Secret Service has claimed Exemption 7(F) on the ground that disclosure of this information to plaintiff constitutes disclosure to the general public and that the agents involved in the investigation, as well as others who supplied information, may be subjected to retaliation. The Court finds that the agency's affidavit in support of this exemption is insufficient. However, since the agency claims that "all material in Secret Service files which was denied to the plaintiff . . . for the reason that such information is exempt from disclosure under the provisions of" Exemptions 5, 7(C), 7(D), and 7(F), the failure of its Exemption 7(F) claim has no impact on the Court's decision to grant the agency's motion to dismiss this action.
Plaintiff has also moved for the production of a Vaughn index and for in camera inspection of the withheld documents. In light of the Court's decision on the merits, these motions are moot and must be denied.
An Order in accordance with this Opinion shall be issued on even date herewith.
Dated: July 12, 1988
ORDER - July 12, 1988, Filed
In accordance with the Opinion issued on even date herewith, it is by the Court this 12 day of July, 1988,
ORDERED that defendants' motion to dismiss be, and hereby is, granted; and it is
FURTHER ORDERED that this action shall stand dismissed with prejudice.
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