United States District Court, District of Columbia
DAVID T. HARDY, Plaintiff,
BUREAU OF ALCOHOL, TOBACCO, FIREARMS AND EXPLOSIVES, et al ., Defendants.
A. HOWELL Chief Judge
plaintiff, David T. Hardy, a self-described “attorney
and internet blogger who disseminates information relating to
firearms law issues, ” Compl. ¶ 4, ECF No. 2,
initiated this lawsuit against the Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), the
Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and DOJ's
Office of Inspector General (“OIG”), claiming
that the agencies violated the Freedom of Information Act
(“FOIA”), 5 U.S.C. § 522, by improperly
withholding responsive documents he requested regarding
ATF's policies on registered handguns and certain
documents “given to” OIG “in connection
with” an OIG report on ATF's National Firearms
Registration and Transfer Record (“NFRTR”).
See Compl. ¶¶ 10, 18, 21. Pending before
the Court are the defendants' Motion for Summary
Judgment, Defs.' Mot. Summ. J. (“Defs.'
Mot.”), ECF No. 22, and the plaintiff's
cross-motion for summary judgment, Pl.'s Cross-Mot. Summ.
J. and Opp'n to Defs.' Mot. (“Pl.'s
Opp'n”) at 1, ECF No. 24. For the reasons stated
below, both motions are granted in part and denied in
March 18, 2015, OIG received a FOIA request from the
plaintiff seeking “any statements, surveys, or reports
of interviews given” to OIG “in connection with
OIG Report No. I-2007-006, ” titled “The Bureau
of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives' National
Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, June 2007, ”
(the “NFRTR Report”), which had been prepared by
OIG's Evaluation and Inspections Division. Compl., Ex. 3,
FOIA Request to OIG, ECF No. 2-3; Defs.' Mot., Ex. 2,
Decl. of Deborah M. Waller (“Waller Decl.”)
¶ 3, ECF No. 22-2, and Ex. 4, NFRTR Report, ECF No.
22-4. The report gathered information about the
NFRTR (“NFRTR”), an electronic database that
contains records on almost two million weapons regulated by
the National Firearms Act (“NFA”). NFRTR Report
at 2. OIG examined ATF's “effectiveness in
maintaining the records of registrations and transfers of NFA
weapons in the NFRTR . . . in response to requests from
members of Congress who had received letters from citizens
expressing concern about the accuracy and completeness of the
NFRTR.” Id. at 3. OIG's review included
interviews, data analyses and document reviews, an electronic
survey, a site visit to an NFA Branch, which is responsible
for maintaining the NFRTR, and a demonstration of the NFRTR
database. Id. at 24-26.
to both parties, the requested records at issue fall into one
of three categories: “(1) records of interviews and
notes of telephone interviews, (2) survey results, a draft
survey, survey data summaries, and survey data analysis, and
(3) miscellaneous work papers, including indexes of materials
and interviews; and summaries of a document and emails that
were reviewed.” Defs.' Mot., Ex. 3, Decl. of Nina
S. Pelletier (“Pelletier Decl.”) ¶ 5, ECF
No. 22-3;see also Pl.'s Response to
Defs.' Stmt. Of Undisputed Material Facts & Pl.'s
Stmt. Of Material Facts. Supp. Cross-Mot. Summ J.
(“Pl.'s SUMF”) at 3, ECF No. 24.
August 2015, OIG prepared a response to the plaintiff's
request, advising that OIG deemed the responsive records
“reflect[ive] of the deliberative processes of the
OIG” and exempt from disclosure pursuant to the
“deliberative process” privilege under Exemption
5 of FOIA but, due to a clerical error, this letter was not
actually delivered to the plaintiff until after litigation
had already commenced. Waller Decl. ¶¶ 5-6; see
also 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(5) (“Exemption
5”) (exempting materials that are
“pre-decisional” and “deliberative”).
January 2016, after litigation in this matter had begun, OIG
reviewed sixty documents related to the NFRTR Report and
“determined that portions of the records that were
directly quoted in the final report could be segregated and
released without compromising the deliberative processes of
the OIG.” Waller Decl. ¶ 7. The following month,
on February 26, 2016, OIG provided the plaintiff
approximately forty pages of highly redacted documents,
consisting of records of interviews from which OIG redacted
the location, the participants, the inspector, and nearly all
of the summaries of discussion during the interview,
see Pl.'s Mot., Ex. 1 at 1-21, ECF No. 24-1,
along with an index of responsive records withheld under
claim of exemption, pursuant to Vaughn v. Rosen, 484
F.2d 820 (D.C. Cir. 1973) (the “Vaughn
Index”), Waller Decl. ¶ 7; Pl.'s SUMF at 4,
¶¶ 5-6. The Vaughn Index reflects the
withholding, in whole or in part, by OIG of sixty responsive
documents totaling 511 pages, primarily on the basis of the
deliberative process privilege under Exemption 5.
See Defs.' Mot., Ex. 6, Vaughn Index,
ECF No. 22-2.
plaintiff contends that OIG has improperly withheld documents
under Exemption 5. Pl.'s Opp'n at 8-16. If application of
this exemption is not declared improper, the plaintiff
requests that the Court conduct an in camera review
of the withheld documents, starting with a sample of 79
pages, to determine whether they were properly withheld.
Id. at 16.
Rule of Civil Procedure 56 provides that summary judgment
shall be granted “if the movant shows that there is no
genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is
entitled to judgment as a matter of law.” Fed.R.Civ.P.
56(a). The moving party bears the burden of demonstrating the
“absence of a genuine issue of material fact” in
dispute, Celotex Corp. v. Catrett, 477 U.S. 317, 323
(1986), while the nonmoving party must present specific facts
supported by materials in the record that would be admissible
at trial and that could enable a reasonable jury to find in
its favor, see Anderson v. Liberty Lobby, Inc.
(“Liberty Lobby”), 477 U.S. 242, 248 (1986);
Allen v. Johnson, 795 F.3d 34, 38 (D.C. Cir. 2015)
(noting that, on summary judgment, appropriate inquiry is
“whether, on the evidence so viewed, ‘a
reasonable jury could return a verdict for the nonmoving
party'” (quoting Liberty Lobby, 477 U.S.
at 248)). “[T]hese general standards under [R]ule 56
apply with equal force in the FOIA context, ”
Washington Post Co. v. U.S. Dep't of Health &
Human Servs., 865 F.2d 320, 325 (D.C. Cir. 1989), and
the D.C. Circuit has observed that “‘the vast
majority of FOIA cases can be resolved on summary judgment,
'” Brayton v. Office of U.S. Trade
Representative, 641 F.3d 521, 527 (D.C. Cir. 2011).
FOIA was enacted “to promote the ‘broad
disclosure of Government records' by generally requiring
federal agencies to make their records available to the
public on request.” DiBacco v. U.S. Army, 795
F.3d 178, 183 (D.C. Cir. 2015) (citing U.S. Dep't of
Justice v. Julian, 486 U.S. 1, 8 (1988)). Reflecting the
necessary balance between the public's interest in
governmental transparency and “legitimate governmental
and private interests that could be harmed by release of
certain types of information, ” United Techs. Corp.
v. U.S. Dep't of Def., 601 F.3d 557, 559 (D.C. Cir.
2010) (alteration adopted) (quoting Critical Mass. Energy
Project v. Nuclear Regulatory Comm'n, 975 F.2d 871,
872 (D.C.Cir.1992)), the FOIA contains nine exemptions set
forth in 5 U.S.C. § 552(b), which “are
‘explicitly made exclusive, ' . . ., and must be
‘narrowly construed, '” Milner v. U.S.
Dep't of Navy, 562 U.S. 562, 565 (2011) (quoting
Envtl. Prot. Agency v. Mink, 410 U.S. 73, 79 (1973),
and FBI v. Abramson, 456 U.S. 615, 630 (1982));
see also Murphy v. Exec. Office for U.S. Attorneys,
789 F.3d 204, 206 (D.C. Cir. 2015); Citizens for
Responsibility & Ethics in Wash. v. U.S. Dep't of
Justice (“CREW”), 746 F.3d 1082,
1088 (D.C. Cir. 2014); Pub. Citizen, Inc. v. Office of
Mgmt. & Budget, 598 F.3d 865, 869 (D.C. Cir. 2010).
“[T]hese limited exemptions do not obscure the basic
policy that disclosure, not secrecy, is the dominant
objective of the Act.” Dep't of Air Force v.
Rose, 425 U.S. 352, 361 (1976).
litigation challenging the sufficiency of “the release
of information under the FOIA, ‘the agency has the
burden of showing that requested information comes within a
FOIA exemption.'” Pub. Citizen Health Research
Grp. v. FDA, 185 F.3d 898, 904 (D.C. Cir. 1999) (quoting
Niagra Mohawk Power Corp. v. U.S. Dep't of
Energy, 169 F.3d 16, 18 (D.C. Cir. 1999)); see also
Fed. Open Mkt. Comm. of Fed. Reserve Sys. v. Merrill,
443 U.S. 340, 352 (1979) (agency invoking exemption bears the
burden “to establish that the requested information is
exempt”); U.S. Dep't of Justice v. Reporters
Comm. for Freedom of Press, 489 U.S. 749, 755 (1989);
DiBacco, 795 F.3d at 195; CREW, 746 F.3d at
1088; Elec. Frontier Found. v. U.S. Dep't of Justice
(“EFF”), 739 F.3d 1, 7 (D.C. Cir. 2014);
Assassination Archives & Research Ctr. v. CIA,
334 F.3d 55, 57 (D.C. Cir. 2003). This burden does not shift
even when the requester files a cross-motion for summary
judgment because “the Government ‘ultimately
[has] the onus of proving that the [documents] are exempt
from disclosure, ” while the “burden upon the
requester is merely ‘to establish the absence of
material factual issues before a summary disposition of the
case could permissibly occur.” Pub. Citizen Health
Research Grp.v. FDA, 185 F.3d at 904-05 (alterations in
original) (quoting Nat'l Ass'n of Gov't Emps.
v. Campbell, 593 F.2d 1023, 1027 (D.C. Cir. 1978)).
agency may carry its burden of properly invoking an exemption
by submitting sufficiently detailed affidavits or
declarations, a Vaughn index of the withheld
documents, or both, to demonstrate that the government has
analyzed carefully any material withheld, to enable the court
to fulfill its duty of ruling on the applicability of the
exemption, and to enable the adversary system to operate by
giving the requester as much information as possible, on the
basis of which the requester's case may be presented to
the trial court. See Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Secret
Serv., 726 F.3d 208, 215 (D.C. Cir. 2013) (“In
FOIA cases, ‘summary judgment may be granted on the
basis of agency affidavits if they contain reasonable
specificity of detail rather than merely conclusory
statements, and if they are not called into question by
contradictory evidence in the record or by evidence of agency
bad faith.'” (alteration adopted) (quoting
Consumer Fed'n of Am. v. Dep't of Agric.,
455 F.3d 283, 287 (D.C. Cir. 2006))); Oglesby v. U.S.
Dep't of Army, 79 F.3d 1172, 1176 (D.C. Cir. 1996)
(instructing that agency affidavit “should reveal as
much detail as possible as to the nature of the document,
without actually disclosing information that deserves
protection[, ] . . . [which] serves the purpose of providing
the requestor with a realistic opportunity to challenge the
agency's decision” (citation omitted));
CREW, 746 F.3d at 1088 (noting that agency's
burden is sustained by submitting affidavits that
“describe the justifications for nondisclosure with
reasonably specific detail, demonstrate that the information
withheld logically falls within the claimed exemption, and
are not controverted by either contrary evidence in the
record nor by evidence of agency bad faith”) (quoting
Larson v. U.S. Dep't of State, 565 F.3d 857, 862
(D.C. Cir. 2009)). While “an agency's task is not
herculean[, ]” it must “‘describe the
justifications for nondisclosure with reasonably specific
detail' and ‘demonstrate that the information
withheld logically falls within the claimed
exemption.'” Murphy, 789 F.3d at 209
(quoting Larson, 565 F.3d at 862).
“Ultimately, an agency's justification for invoking
a FOIA exemption is sufficient if it appears
‘logical' or ‘plausible.'”
Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Dep't of Def., 715
F.3d 937, 941 (D.C. Cir. 2013) (quoting ACLU v. U.S.
Dep't of Def., 628 F.3d 612, 619 (D.C. Cir. 2011));
Larson, 565 F.3d at 862 (quoting Wolf v.
CIA, 473 F.3d 370, 374-75 (D.C. Cir. 2007)).
FOIA provides federal courts with the power to “enjoin
the agency from withholding agency records and to order the
production of any agency records improperly withheld from the
complainant, ” 5 U.S.C. § 552(a)(4)(B), and
“directs district courts to determine de novo
whether non-disclosure was permissible, ” Elec.
Privacy Info. Ctr. v. U.S. Dep't of Homeland Sec.,
777 F.3d 518, 522 (D.C. Cir. 2015), by reviewing the
Vaughn index and any supporting declarations
“to verify the validity of each claimed exemption,
” Summers v. U.S. Dep't of Justice, 140
F.3d 1077, 1080 (D.C. Cir. 1998). As part of this review,
district courts also have an “affirmative duty”
to consider whether the agency has produced all segregable,
non-exempt information, regardless of whether the FOIA
plaintiff has raised this issue. Elliott v. U.S.
Dep't of Agric., 596 F.3d 842, 851 (D.C. Cir. 2010)
(quoting Morley v. CIA, 508 F.3d 1108, 1123 (D.C.
Cir. 2007)); see also Stolt-Nielsen Transp. Grp. Ltd. v.
United States, 534 F.3d 728, 734 (D.C. Cir. 2008)
(“[B]efore approving the application of a FOIA
exemption, the district court must make specific findings of
segregability regarding the documents to be withheld.”)
(quoting Sussman v. U.S. Marshals Serv., 494 F.3d
1106, 1116 (D.C. Cir. 2007)); Trans-Pac. Policing
Agreement v. U.S. Customs Serv., 177 F.3d 1022, 1028
(D.C. Cir. 1999) (“[W]e believe that the District Court
had an affirmative duty to consider the segregability issue
sua sponte . . . even if the issue has not been
specifically raised by the FOIA plaintiff.” (citations
omitted)); 5 U.S.C. § 552(b) (“Any reasonably
segregable portion of a record shall be provided to any
person requesting such record after deletion of the portions
which are exempt under this subsection.”).
withheld, in full or in part, records responsive to all three
categories of requested documents, pursuant to the
deliberative process privilege under Exemption 5. Pelletier
Decl. ¶ 5; Waller Decl. ¶¶ 8-10. The contours
of the deliberative process privilege are discussed first,
before turning to whether OIG has sustained its burden of
showing both that the contested documents are properly
withheld under Exemption 5 and that all reasonably segregable
portions have been disclosed.
Exemption 5's Deliberative Process Privilege
to protect “open and frank discussion” among
government officials to enhance the quality of agency
decisions, Dep't of Interior v. Klamath Water Users
Protective Ass'n (“Klamath
Water”), 532 U.S. 1, 9 (2001), Exemption 5
protects from disclosure “inter-agency or intra-agency
memorandums or letters which would not be available by law to
a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency,
” 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(5); see also Judicial
Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Dep't of Def., 847 F.3d 735
(D.C. Cir. 2017) (“Exemption 5 . . . allows agencies to
withhold information that would in the context of litigation
be protected from discovery by a ‘recognized
evidentiary or discovery privilege.'” (alteration
adopted) (quoting Pub. Citizen, Inc. v. Office of Mgmt.
& Budget, 598 F.3d at 874)). Specifically, the
deliberative process privilege, under Exemption 5,
“protects ‘documents reflecting advisory
opinions, recommendations and deliberations comprising part
of a process by which governmental decisions and policies are
formulated.'” Loving v. U.S. Dep't of
Def., 550 F.3d 32, 38 (D.C. Cir. 2008) (quoting
Klamath Water, 532 U.S. at 8).
deliberative process privilege serves at least three policy
purposes. First, the privilege “protects creative
debate and candid consideration of alternatives within an
agency, and, thereby, improves the quality of agency policy
decisions.” Jordan v. U.S. Dep't of
Justice, 591 F.2d 753, 772 (D.C. Cir. 1978) (citations
omitted). “Second, it protects the public from the
confusion that would result from premature exposure to
discussions occurring before the policies affecting it had
actually been settled upon.” Id. at 772-73
(citations omitted). Third, “it protects the integrity
of the decision-making process itself by confirming that
‘officials would be judged by what they decided[, ] not
for matters they considered before making up their
minds.'” Id. at 773 (alteration in
original) (quoting Grumman Aircraft Eng'g Corp. v.
Renegotiation Bd., 482 F.2d 710, 718 (D.C. Cir. 1973),
rev'd on other grounds, 421 U.S. 168 (1975));
see also Coastal States Gas Corp. v. Dep't of
Energy (“Coastal States”), 617 F.2d
854, 866 (D.C. Cir. 1980).
qualify for the deliberative process privilege, an
intra-agency memorandum must be both pre-decisional and
deliberative.” Abtew v. U.S. Dep't of Homeland
Sec., 808 F.3d 895, 898 (D.C. Cir. 2015) (citing
Coastal States, 617 F.2d at 866). “Documents
are ‘predecisional' if they are ‘generated
before the adoption of an agency policy, ' and
‘deliberative' if they ‘reflect [ ] the
give-and-take of the consultative process.'”
Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Dep't of Def., 847
F.3d at 739 (alteration in original) (quoting Pub.
Citizen, Inc. v. Office of Mgmt. & Budget, 598 F.3d
at 874). As the government concedes, “[a]
pre-decisional document [is] not always protected by
Exemption 5” because “a document must be both
pre-decisional and deliberative for the deliberative process
privilege to apply.” Defs.' Reply Supp. Mot. Summ.
J. (“Defs.' Reply”) at 8, ECF No. 27 (citing
Access Reports v. U.S. Dep't of Justice, 926
F.2d 1192, 1194 (D.C. Cir. 1991)). The government bears the
burden of showing that the withheld document is both
predecisional and deliberative. Tax Analysts v. IRS,
117 F.3d 607, 616 (D.C. Cir. 1997).
the deliberative process privilege, factual information
generally must be disclosed, but materials embodying
officials' opinions are ordinarily exempt.”
Petroleum Info. Corp. v. U.S. Dep't of Interior,
976 F.2d 1429, 1434 (D.C. Cir. 1992) (citations omitted).
Nonetheless, “the D.C. Circuit has cautioned against
overuse of the factual/deliberative distinction.”
Goodrich Corp. v. U.S. Envtl. Prot. Agency, 593
F.Supp.2d 184, 189 (D.D.C. 2009) (citing Dudman
Comm'ns Corp. v. Dep't of Air Force, 815 F.2d
1565, 1568 (D.C. Cir. 1987)). Consequently, the D.C. Circuit
has taken a functional approach to application of the
deliberative process privilege, instructing that “the
legitimacy of withholding does not turn on whether the
material is purely factual in nature or whether it is already
in the public domain, but rather on whether the selection or
organization of facts is part of an agency's deliberative
process.” Ancient Coin Collectors Guild v. U.S.
Dep't of State, 641 F.3d 504, 513 (D.C. Cir. 2011)
(citation omitted); see also Petroleum Info. Corp. v.
U.S. Dep't of Interior, 976 F.2d at 1435 (“To
fall within the deliberative process privilege, materials
must bear on the formulation or exercise of agency
policy-oriented judgment.” (emphasis in
original) (citation omitted)); Wolfe v.
Dep't of Health & Human Servs., 839 F.2d 768,
774 (D.C. Cir. 1988) (noting that, although “the
fact/opinion distinction ‘offers a quick, clear and
predictable rule of decision' for most cases, ”
courts “must examine the information requested in light
of the policies and goals that underlie the deliberative
process privilege” (quoting Mead Data Central, Inc.
v. U.S. Dep't of Air Force, 566 F.2d 242, 256 (D.C.
Cir. 1977))); Mead Data Central, Inc. v. Dep't of Air
Force, 566 F.2d at 256 (noting that “[i]n some
circumstances, . . ., the disclosure of even purely factual
material may so expose the deliberative process within an
agency that it must” enjoy the deliberative process
privilege); Montrose Chem. Corp. of Cal. v. Train,
491 F.2d 63, 71 (D.C. Cir. 1974) (“Exemption 5 was
intended to protect not simply deliberative material, but
also the deliberative process of agencies.”).
this functional approach, an agency may not rely on the
deliberative process privilege unless, if disclosed, the
factual information would reveal something about the
agency's deliberative process, see Playboy
Enterprises, Inc. v. U.S. Dep't of Justice, 677 F.2d
931, 936 (D.C. Cir. 1982), or if the factual information is
“inextricably intertwined with the deliberative
sections of documents, ” In re Sealed Case,
121 F.3d at 737. See Access Reports v. U.S.
Dep't of Justice, 926 F.2d at 1195 (noting
that the “‘key question' in identifying
‘deliberative' material” remains
“whether disclosure of the information would
‘discourage candid discussion within the
agency'” (quoting Dudman Comm'ns Corp. v.
Dep't of Air Force, 815 F.2d at 1567-68)). This
principle is applied below to OIG's justifications for
withholding each of the three categories of documents.
Analysis of OIG's Application of the Deliberative Process
plaintiff challenges OIG's withholding under the
deliberative process privilege of 511 pages in sixty
responsive records falling into three categories of requested
records: “(1) records of interviews and notes of
telephone interviews, (2) survey results, a draft survey,
survey data summaries, and survey data analysis, and (3)
miscellaneous work papers, including indexes of materials and
interviews; and summaries of a document and emails that were
reviewed.” Pelletier Decl. ¶ 5; Pl.'s SUMF at
Notably, the “predecisional” character of these
withheld records is not disputed. Consequently, analysis is
limited to whether OIG has provided adequate detail in the
Vaughn Index and Waller and Pelletier declarations
regarding the three categories of documents to show that the
“deliberative” prong of the deliberative process
privilege is met, justifying withholding of the
records. See, e.g., Army Times
Publ'g Co. v. Dep't of Air Force, 998 F.2d 1067,
1070 (D.C. Cir. 1993) (addressing only the deliberative prong
where the predecisional character of materials was not in
appears to suggest a blanket rule covering all the documents,
asserting that even if the documents contain purely factual
information, they were produced in preparation for a final
public report and thus are non-disclosable. See
Defs.' Reply at 5 (asserting that even purely factual
matter “‘may so expose the deliberative process
within an agency' that the material is appropriately
privileged.” (quoting Mead Data Central, Inc. v.
Dep't of Air Force, 566 F.2d at 256). The
“limited exception to the general principle that purely
factual material may not be withheld under Exemption 5 may
not be read so broadly, however, as to swallow the rule,
” Nat'l Whistleblower Ctr. v. Dep't of
Health & Human Servs., 849 F.Supp.2d 13, 37 (D.D.C.
2012), and “application of the deliberative process
privilege is context-specific, ” Edmonds Inst. v.
U.S. Dep't of Interior, 460 F.Supp.2d 63, 70 (D.D.C.
2006). Whether the deliberative process privilege applies is
necessarily “dependent upon the individual document and
the role it plays in the administrative process.”
Coastal States, 617 F.2d at 867. Thus, while some
“purely factual” documents may be protected by
the deliberative process privilege, others may not.
Otherwise, “every factual report would be protected as
a part of the deliberative process.” Leopold v.
CIA, 89 F.Supp.3d 12, 23 (D.D.C. 2015) (quoting
Playboy Enterprises, Inc. v. Dep't of Justice,
677 F.2d at 935). As the plaintiff notes, “[u]nder
Defendants' theory, all data, factual or not, is exempt
under Exemption 5 because all data received would trigger an
exercise of judgment on its investigators, and perhaps the
survey responders as well. This is an impermissible
interpretation of FOIA which destroys the law.”
Pl.'s Reply Def.'s Opp'n Cross-Mot. Summ. J.
(“Pl.'s Reply”) at 4, ECF No. 29.
issue, then, is whether, for each contested document
withheld in part or in full, the declarations establish (1)
“‘what deliberative process is involved, ”
Senate of P.R. v. U.S. Dep't of Justice, 823
F.2d 574, 585-86 (D.C. Cir. 1987) (quoting Coastal
States, 617 F.2d at 868), (2) “the role played by
the documents in issue in the course of that process,
'” id. (quoting Coastal States,
617 F.2d at 868), and (3) “‘the nature of the
decisionmaking authority vested in the office or person
issuing the disputed document[s], and the positions in the
chain of command of the parties to the documents,
'” EFF, 826 F.Supp.2d at 168 (D.D.C. 2011)
(quoting Arthur Andersen & Co. v. IRS, 679 F.2d
254, 258 (D.C. Cir. 1982)).
Records of Interviews and ...