The American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit April 12, 2017, demanding government documents about the on-the-ground implementation of President Trump's Muslim bans.
The action is part of a total of 13 FOIA lawsuits filed by ACLU affiliates across the country. The ACLU of Indiana lawsuit is seeking records from its local U.S. Customs and Border Protection's office. In particular, the lawsuit seeks records related to CBP's implementation of President Trump's Muslim bans at Indianapolis International Airport.
The ACLU first sought this information through FOIA requests submitted to CBP on February 2. Since the government has failed to substantively respond, the ACLU is now suing.
"CBP has a long history of ignoring its obligations under the federal Freedom of Information Act — a law that was enacted to ensure that Americans have timely access to information of pressing public concern. The public has a right to know how federal immigration officials have handled the implementation of the Muslim bans, especially after multiple federal courts have blocked various aspects of these executive orders," said Mitra Ebadolahi, Border Litigation Project Staff Attorney with the ACLU of San Diego and Imperial Counties.
Each lawsuit seeks unique and local information regarding how CBP implemented the executive orders at specific airports and ports of entry in the midst of rapidly developing and sometimes conflicting government guidance.
The coordinated lawsuits seek information from the following local CBP offices:
All of the affiliate FOIA lawsuits are available here. The ACLU national issued this news release on April 12, 2017, in addition to this news release regarding the original FOIA requests on Feb. 2, 2017.