Aircraft information request for 2010 208b Cessna

Jacob Appelbaum filed this request with the Department of Justice, United States Marshals of the United States of America .
Tracking #

2020USMS35416

Status
Completed

Communications

From: Jacob Appelbaum


To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

All records, documents, emails, and other correspondence regarding or related to the operation or ownership or use of the 2010 model 208b Cessna airplane as well as any additional equipment attached to the aircraft. This aircraft has serial number 208B2245 and holds registration N1789M. This aircraft uses the mode-s code of A13A84 in hexadecimal. I request contemporary records, documents, emails, privacy assessments, purchase orders, maintenance records, contracts, and other correspondence relating to the equipment, the use of the equipment, or any work product of the equipment.

Additionally, I would like any manuals, procedures, communications protocols, and any communications related to inter-agency coordination which apply to aerial surveillance using this aircraft. This should include pilot logs, names of pilots and others onboard, formal or informal flight plans related to June 13th 2020, and any surveillance plans. Specifically, I am looking for any and all data relating to flights over and near the city of Portland, Oregon on June 13th, 2020 where the aircraft was documented flying in circles over demonstrations at an altitude of approximately 1,500 feet. Any imaging or other surveillance data from onboard collection is additionally requested, as well as any policies which govern the collection, processing, use, and dissemination of this data. Any communication about this data or related data should be included, especially inter-agency communications, and metadata.

Furthermore, I request all communications, records, and related communication about a related information request as filed by Senator Ron Wyden (as reported by KATU: https://katu.com/news/local/oregon-lawmakers-question-plane-flying-over-protests-with-ties-to-us-marshals ). To quote the KATU coverage, Senator Ron Wyden has asked at least the following questions:

"Does the USMS own or operate the Cessna Caravan airplane, tail number N1789M, that reportedly flew 30 loops over Portland on the night of June 13, 2020?
Who authorized the use of a front company to register these airplanes? Please provide us with a copy of this authorization.
Who authorized the June 13, 2020, flight over Portland? Please provide us with a copy of this authorization.
What surveillance equipment was used and what types of data were collected during this operation?
Has data collected during this operation been shared with other agencies or any other entity? If so please identify them.
If surveillance technology was used, was it authorized by a court? If yes, please provide us with a copy of the court order and the corresponding application.
Has data collected on this flight been minimized, destroying data on innocent people who are not the targets of an investigation? If yes, please explain how. If no, please explain why not."

I request the same information as the honorable Senator.

This information is part of a journalistic research project involving the Seattle Privacy Coalition.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Jacob Appelbaum

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

Dear Mr. Applebaum;
In regards to your FOIA request referenced in the subject line of this email, you sought the following documents:

1. All records, documents, emails, and other correspondence regarding or related to the operation or ownership or use of the 2010 model 208b Cessna airplane as well as any additional equipment attached to the aircraft. This aircraft has serial number 208B2245 and holds registration N1789M. This aircraft uses the mode-s code of A13A84 in hexadecimal. I request contemporary records, documents, emails, privacy assessments, purchase orders, maintenance records, contracts, and other correspondence relating to the equipment, the use of the equipment, or any work product of the equipment.

2. Additionally, I would like any manuals, procedures, communications protocols, and any communications related to inter-agency coordination which apply to aerial surveillance using this aircraft. This should include pilot logs, names of pilots and others onboard, formal or informal flight plans related to June 13th 2020, and any surveillance plans. Specifically, I am looking for any and all data relating to flights over and near the city of Portland, Oregon on June 13th, 2020 where the aircraft was documented flying in circles over demonstrations at an altitude of approximately 1,500 feet. Any imaging or other surveillance data from onboard collection is additionally requested, as well as any policies which govern the collection, processing, use, and dissemination of this data. Any communication about this data or related data should be included, especially inter-agency communications, and metadata.

3. Furthermore, I request all communications, records, and related communication about a related information request as filed by Senator Ron Wyden (as reported by KATU: https://katu.com/news/local/oregon-lawmakers-question-plane-flying-over-protestswith-ties-to-us-marshals ).

The FOIA specifies a request for agency records must reasonably describe the records sought. 5 USC § 552 (a)(3)(A). A description of a requested record is sufficient if it enables a professional agency employee familiar with the subject area to locate the record with a "reasonable amount of effort." See: Truitt v. Dep't of State, 897 F.2d 540, 544-45 (D.C. Cir. 1990); Ferri v. DOJ, 573 F. Supp. 852, 859 (W.D. Pa. 1983). A federal agency is not required to a conduct wide-ranging, unreasonably burdensome search for responsive records to a FOIA request. See: Nation Magazine v. U.S. Customs Serv., 71 F.3d 885, 892 (D.C. Cir. 1995); AFGE v. U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 907 F.2d 203, 209 (D.C. Cir. 1990).

Your FOIA request as submitted is overly broad and not sufficiently particular. A federal agency is permitted to seek clarification of overly broad requests because an agency is not required to conduct a search which would place an inordinate burden on agency resources. See Van Strum v. EPA, Nos. 91-35404, 91-35577, 1992 WL 197660, at *1 (9th Cir. 1992). Accordingly, the USMS requests you provide additional clarification regarding the specific record(s) you seek and the appropriate time period for the FOIA request. Furthermore, USMS requests that you more clearly define "equipment" as referenced in your request above. Providing the USMS with a defined time period to search for potentially responsive records, and clarifying the meaning of ambiguous terms, will allow the Agency to complete a search for potentially responsive documents in a more expeditious manner.

USMS FOIA

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

Good Afternoon,

I hope this email finds you safe and in good health.

Attached is an acknowledgement letter pertaining to USMS FOIA Request number 2020USMS35416.

Should you have any questions you can email usms.foia@usdoj.gov<mailto:usms.foia@usdoj.gov>.

Thank you,

USMS FOIA Administrative Team

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

Dear Mr. Applebaum;
To date, we have not received a response to the email below requesting clarification of the request you submitted on or about June 26, 2020. If we do not receive your response within 30 calendar days, your request will be administratively closed.

USMS FOIA

From: Jacob Appelbaum

Hello,

I'm writing to continue my request from June 26th, 2020. In response to the US Marshal email from July 15th which contained a request to clarify my original request. The equipment referenced in my original request is equipment installed in or on the aircraft - for example a GPS device, radio for air to ground or air to air communication, a FLIR camera, etc. I am looking for an enumeration of the technological equipment as it was installed in the aircraft in question on and around June 26th, 2020 as it performed aerial surveillance over the Portland, Oregon demonstrations. I'm furthermore looking for emails and communication which reference this aircraft, and any surveillance product produced on or around that date. For example, if the aircraft was also used on June 24th and/or June 30th to perform surveillance over Portland, I also request this data.

Additionally, I believe that any records which were created, and then shared as part of information requests filed by Senator Ron Wyden's office (as reported by KATU: https://katu.com/news/local/oregon-lawmakers-question-plane-flying-over-protestswith-ties-to-us-marshals ) should be responsive. This should also cut down on time and labor as those documents should have already been produced, and I am merely asking for a copy of what are already existing public records which have been produced.

Sincerely,
Jacob Appelbaum

From: Jacob Appelbaum

I'm writing again to continue my request from June 26th, 2020 as I did on August 11th, 2020. In response to the US Marshal email from July 15th which contained a request to clarify my original request. The equipment referenced in my original request is equipment installed in or on the aircraft - for example a GPS device, radio for air to ground or air to air communication, a FLIR camera, etc. I am looking for an enumeration of the technological equipment as it was installed in the aircraft in question on and around June 26th, 2020 as it performed aerial surveillance over the Portland, Oregon demonstrations. I'm furthermore looking for emails and communication which reference this aircraft, and any surveillance product produced on or around that date. For example, if the aircraft was also used on June 24th and/or June 30th to perform surveillance over Portland, I also request this data.

Additionally, I believe that any records which were created, and then shared as part of information requests filed by Senator Ron Wyden's office (as reported by KATU: https://katu.com/news/local/oregon-lawmakers-question-plane-flying-over-protestswith-ties-to-us-marshals ) should be responsive. This should also cut down on time and labor as those documents should have already been produced, and I am merely asking for a copy of what are already existing public records which have been produced.

Could someone please reply and confirm that this FOIA is still being properly processed?

Sincerely,
Jacob Appelbaum

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

Dear Mr. Applebaum;
Please be advised that we are currently conducting the search at this time and awaiting all responsive divisions’ search results. As soon as they are returned, we will issue a final response.

USMS FOIA

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

Dear Mr. Applebaum;
Please see attached for the final response to your FOIA request.

USMS FOIA

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