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Henderson v. United States Department of Justice

United States District Court, District of Columbia

January 29, 2016

James M. Henderson, Plaintiff,
v.
United States Department of Justice, et al., Defendants.

MEMORANDUM OPINION

AMY BERMAN JACKSON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

This matter is before the Court on the parties’ cross-motions for summary judgment [ECF Nos. 12-13]. For the reasons discussed below, the Court will grant summary judgment for defendants.[1]

FACTUAL BACKGROUND

Plaintiff brought this action under the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), see 5 U.S.C. § 552, against the United States Department of Justice (“DOJ”), to challenge the response of the Executive Office for United States Attorneys (“EOUSA”) to his August 2, 2013 request for information (Request No. 13-3226).[2] See Compl. at 1. The “subject” section of the request reads:

[United States v.] James M. Henderson
Superceding Indictment Dated 07 Aug 2008
Case No.: 08-14042-CR-Moore/Lynch(s)
Stenograph Contract Records FY2008

USAO – Southern District of Florida – West Palm Beach

Mem. of P. & A. in Support of Defs.’ Mot. for Summ. J., Decl. of Vinay J. Jolly (“Jolly Decl.”), Ex. A (Freedom of Information Act & Privacy Act Request dated August 2, 2013). In the body of the request, plaintiff then asks for the following information:

A full and complete copy of the Stenographic Contract Records that was currently active at the time of the above subject matter, which consist of Form 347/Orders For Supplies Or. Services; Form 348/Order For Supplies Or. Services Schedule Continuation, and Standard Form 18/Request for Quotation.

Jolly Decl., Ex. A.

EOUSA staff assigned the matter a tracking number (Request No. 13-3226), and referred the matter to United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida (“USAO/SDFL”).[3] Defs.’ Mem., Decl. of Maritza Cuadros (“Cuadros Decl.”) ¶ 6; Jolly Decl. ¶ 5. A search of records maintained by the USAO/SDFL yielded one responsive record, and the EOUSA released it after redacting information under Exemption 7(C). Jolly Decl. ¶ 7; see id., Ex. E (Letter to plaintiff from Susan B. Gerson, Assistant Director, Freedom of Information & Privacy Staff, EOUSA, dated November 17, 2014) at 1.

After reviewing plaintiff’s request in connection with this litigation, the EOUSA released this same page in full. Jolly Decl. ¶ 11. In addition, and upon consideration of plaintiff’s request for “[a] full and complete copy of Stenographic Contract Records” referencing his “Superceding Indictment 07 Aug 2008 in the Southern District of Florida Case No. 08-14042-CR-Moore/Lynch, ” Cuadros Decl. ¶ 5, the EOUSA located and released four supplemental pages identified as a “USAO litigation request approving the stenographic services and estimated expense of transcripts . . ., a stenographic bill . . ., and a record of payment of said bill, ” id. ΒΆ 13, after ...


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