|Submitted||Nov. 23, 2015|
MuckRock users can file, duplicate, track, and share public records requests like this one. Learn more.
FBI SAC Michelle S. Klimt
6061 Gate Parkway
Jacksonville, FL 32256
Phone (904) 248-7000
This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:
In 2011 The FBI in Jacksonville, FL. started a campaign seeking tips on public corruption in Tallahassee.
The FBI ran one advertisement, which appeared on the front page of the Tallahassee Democrat.
I've attached a couple of links for your convenience in locating this info.
1. Could you please provide me with a copy of the advertisement that the FBI ran in the Tallahassee Democrat (suitable for reprinting if possible).
2. The cost of this single advertisement.
3. The approximate number of leads that this advertisement produced.
4. The approximate number of investigations that this advertisement produced.
5. The approximate number of arrest and convictions that can be attributed to this advertisement.
I'm just trying to figure out the Return On Investment (ROI) on this project financed with federal tax dollars.
I also request expedited service for this inquiry and I agree to pay the additional fees for this service.
I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request.
I would prefer the request be 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.
871 NE Dixie Hwy.
Jensen Beach, FL. 34957
772 834 6175
Dear Mr. Stone,
The FBI has received your Freedom of Information Act/Privacy (FOIPA) request and it will be forwarded to Initial Processing for review. Your request will be processed under the provisions of FOIPA and a response will be mailed to you at a later date.
Requests for fee waivers and expedited processing will be addressed once your request has been assigned an FOIPA request number. You will receive written notification of the FBI’s decision.
Information regarding the Freedom of Information Act/Privacy is available at http://www.fbi.gov<http://www.fbi.gov>/, http://www.fbi.gov/foia/ or http://www.justice.gov/oip. If you require additional assistance please contact the Public Information Officer.
David P. Sobonya
Public Information Officer/GIS
Record/Information Dissemination Section (RIDS)
FBI-Records Management Division
170 Marcel Drive, Winchester, VA 22602-4843
PIO: (540) 868-4593
Direct: (540) 868-4286
Fax: (540) 868-4391/4997
An interim response, stating the request is being processed.
The request has been rejected as being too vague, burdensome or otherwise unprocessable.
To: Freedom of Information Appeal
Office of Information Policy
U.S. Department of Justice
1425 New York Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530-0001
Donald Stone Appeal of FBI Denial of Expedited Processing
FOIPA Request No.: 1340333-000
Subject: FBI ADVERTISING CAMPAIGN SEEKING TIPS ON PUBLIC CORRUPTION IN TALLAHASSEE (FBI JACKSONVILLE FIELD 2011)
This FOIA appeal is based on the FBI denying expedited service to Requestor, Donald Stone (hereafter Stone) based on the FBI assumption that Stone doesn’t meet any of the FBI criteria as designated by 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(i), 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(ii), 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(iii) or 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(iv).
With the FBI stating, “You have not provided enough information concerning the statutory requirements permitting expedited processing,” therefore, your request is denied.
Stone claims that the FBI denial primarily discriminates against Stone and violates Stone’s Due Process Rights and Equal Protection, and those of all FOIA requestors "similarly circumstanced" like Stone. As opposed to the “special treatment” of a “special class” of FOIA requestors known as “journalist and/or media” (hereafter journalist) and for these reasons and Stone should be allowed to obtain expedited FOIA documents and states as follows:
A very brief background of Stone’s ongoing efforts to bring Gilbert and Mark C. Sapperstein, and certain of their associates to justice, against the wishes of the DOJ, FBI, SEC, IRS etc. Stone has a well-documented history of exposing political corruption at the federal, state, and local levels and maintaining a website www.marylandcorruption.com since approx. 1998. This website chronicles the rise to power of the politically well-connected alleged crime lords, Gilbert Sapperstein (father) and Mark C. Sapperstein (son) as they allegedly built a powerful organized crime syndicate, “under color of law” based in Maryland, with a secondary base of operations in Florida involving both domestic and international activities.
The most notable of Stone’s efforts, is catching the most powerful top federal prosecutor’s from both Maryland and the Southern District of Florida lying in federal court trying to “whitewash” the alleged criminal activities of the Sapperstein’s and certain of their associates as a “business dispute and/or civil matter”, in Stone vs. Warfield 1998.
This is a simple benign routine FOIA request. It appears that the FBI wants to discriminate against FOIA requesters, such as Stone and their efforts to obtain documents in an expedited manner based on their skill set such as John Q Public vs a Journalist and an arbitrary application of 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(ii):
28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(ii)"An urgency to inform the public about an actual or alleged federal government activity, if made by a person primarily engaged in disseminating information."
Generally speaking the courts have held that the requestors use or need of the documents they seek is totally irrelevant to a FOIA request, this would nullify the claims of the FBI under 28 CFR § 16.5(e)(1)(ii) claim of: if made by a person primarily engaged in disseminating information."
Additionally, it’s discrimination, plain and simple to give preferential treatment to a class of citizen known as journalist over John Q Public. In the USA everybody in similar situations is to be treated equally.
The key phrase being "similarly circumstanced", where both journalist and Stone and/or John Q. Public are seeking FOIA documents in an expedited manner.
For example, if the FBI were in the restaurant business, they are claiming that they could serve journalist in an expedited fashion and John Q Public, whenever they darn well pleased. Discrimination, pure and simple, conduct strictly prohibited by the U.S. Constitution.
If the same FBI discriminatory flawed logic under 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(ii) claiming expedited processing only for journalist vs. John Q. Public were applied to the three following scenarios, it would certainly indicate that the FBI are engaging in discrimination with their claim under 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(ii) :
1. A Pro Se litigant vs. a FBI lawyer, the FBI lawyer is a trained professional and possibly a more respected class than the Pro Se litigant, but in the eye of the law and in a court room they have equal standing.
2. If a doctor, lawyer, or journalist buys an item from Ebay or Amazon they can pay the extra money for expedited shipping if they choose. Just as Stone (and all FOIA Requestors ) would be allowed to pay for expedited shipping. Unlike the FBI and their CFR claim, Amazon and Ebay don’t discriminate against their customers, based on their class such as a journalist, doctor, or lawyer vs. John Q Public.
3. And probably the most infamous case and blatant case of FBI FOIA discrimination is the text book case of discrimination against all John Q. Public FOIA requestors for expedited processing is that of Hillary Rodham Clinton. Clinton, a member of the political elite class appears to have simply asked for 900 FBI confidential files and then sent a lawyer over to the FBI to collect them, no FOIA request needed, no FBI stonewalling, no FBI FOIA denials, and certainly no FOIA litigation, most likely a request that was expedited and delivered completely free of any FBI additional service charges.
The requestor, Stone simply asked to be treated as Hillary Rodham Clinton was, if not it is plain and simple, FBI discrimination against a lesser class of citizen, such as Stone. Stone (unlike Hillary Clinton) is willing to follow the FOIA law and file a FOIA request and to pay reasonable fees and any additional fees associated with an expedited request.
The FBI is using CFR to discriminate against a certain class of citizens in the USA based on their, education, social standing, etc. by claiming certain expedited privileges only for journalist, as opposed to John Q. Public. This type of activity is strictly prohibited by the U.S. Constitution and constitutes FBI violation of the Constitutional rights of the requestor, Stone and/or John Q. Public and is best summarized in the following.
By Justice John Marshall Harlan’s lone dissent in the 1896 Supreme Court case, Plessy v. Ferguson
But in view of the Constitution, in the eye of the law, there is in this country no superior, dominant, ruling class of citizens. There is no caste here. Our Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. In respect of civil rights, all citizens are equal before the law. The humblest is the peer of the most powerful. The law regards man as man, and takes no account of his surroundings or of his color when his civil rights as guaranteed by the supreme law of the land are involved.
In Bolling v. Sharpe (1954), African American junior high school students challenged the denial of their requests for admission to all-White schools in Washington, D.C. The case was linked to similar cases in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka (1954) case, but it raised particular issues, because the federal government rather than the states was being accused of discrimination. The Supreme Court ruled that the federal government could not be held to a lesser standard in this important issue of liberty.
The Equal Protection Clause itself applies only to state and local governments. However, the Supreme Court held in Bolling v. Sharpe (1954) that equal protection requirements apply to the federal government through the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.
The 14th amendment is not by its terms applicable to the federal government. Actions by the federal government, however, that classify individuals in a discriminatory manner will, under similar circumstances, violate the due process of the fifth amendment. See U.S. Const. amend. V.
And the FBI claims under: 28 C.F.R. § 16.5 (e)(1)(iii) "The loss of substantial due process of rights."
This FBI denial is a clear violation of Stone’s “Due Process” under the Equal Protection clause of the U.S. Constitution.
Specifically, the FBI gives preferential treatment to journalist who the FBI apparently consider a special class of citizen entitled to special privileges, such as expedited FOIA request and denying the same to Stone and/or John Q. Public.
Again, the key phrase being "similarly circumstanced", where both journalist and Stone and/or John Q. Public are seeking FOIA documents in an expedited manner.
Levels of Scrutiny Under the Equal Protection Clause
The Issue When should Courts closely scrutinize legislative classifications under the Equal Protection Clause ?
Legislation frequently involves making classifications that either advantage or disadvantage one group of persons, but not another. States allow 20-year-olds to drive, but don't let 12-year-olds drive. Indigent single parents receive government financial aid that is denied to millionaires. Obviously, the Equal Protection Clause cannot mean that government is obligated to treat all persons exactly the same--only, at most, that it is obligated to treat people the same if they are "similarly circumstanced."
Do Equal Protection Principles Apply to the Federal Government?
Note that the Fourteenth Amendment reads "No STATE shall deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws." Is the federal government thus free to discriminate? Is it possible that women could be denied positions in the Labor Department because of their sex or that West Point could refuse to admit Hispanics? The answer, which is not obvious as a constitutional matter, was provided in Bolling v Sharpe (1954), in which the Court found segregation in the public schools of Washington, D.C. violated the Constitution. Chief Justice Warren wrote:
"The Fifth Amendment, which is applicable in the District of Columbia, does not contain an equal protection clause as does the Fourteenth Amendment which applies only to the states. But the concepts of equal protection and due process, both stemming from our American ideal of fairness, are not mutually exclusive. The "equal protection of the laws" is a more explicit safeguard of prohibited unfairness than "due process of law," and, therefore, we do not imply that the two are always interchangeable phrases. But, as this Court has recognized, discrimination may be so unjustifiable as to be violative of due process."
Also of special attention in this appeal is that the conduct of the FBI and other government agencies such as the U.S. Dept. of Defense in applying these CFR’s such as 28 C.F.R. § 16.5(e)(1)(ii) is so arbitrary and malicious that even among the privileged class of journalist (that can obtain expedited FOIA processing) the Dept. of Defense openly discriminates against certain journalist, such as award winning investigative journalist, Sharyl Attkisson. Even with Attkisson’s status as an award winning journalist (with access to FOIA expedited processing) , it still took her 10 years to obtain certain FOIA documents as Attkisson testifies to in a Congressional hearing:
Sharyl Attkisson: Freedom of Information Act Is ‘Pointless, Useless Shadow of Its Intended Self’ June 3, 2015 by Natalie Johnson
“Her daughter was 8 years old in 2003, when she submitted the request to the Department of Defense for information regarding soldier vaccine injuries. Attkisson recounted the story at a hearing on government transparency Tuesday in the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.
By the time the Defense Department turned over the documents, her daughter was 18 and getting ready to leave for college.”
“FOIA should be one of the most powerful tools of the public and the press in a free and open society,” Attkisson said. “Instead, it’s largely a pointless, useless shadow of its intended self.
Stone’s response to 28 C.F.R. 16.5 (e)(1)(i) "Circumstances in which the lack of expedited treatment could reasonably be expected to pose an imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an individual."
Stone believes it is reasonable and prudent to be concerned for his personal safety because of his long running efforts to bring Gilbert (father) and Mark C. Sapperstein (son) to justice. The Sapperstein’s, (are alleged by Stone) to be politically well-connected and protected crime lords in Maryland and Florida. And the 2008 disclosure in the following article of Gilbert Sappersteins alleged financial ties to a very dangerous segment of U.S. Latino and/or Black drug traffickers is certainly an ongoing concern for Stone and his personal safety.
And Then There Were Eight (Hollywood-Tied Drug Conspiracy Case Grows) City Paper (Baltimore)10/1/2008 Anderson & Van Smith.
Addressing the issues raised under 28 C.F.R. 16.5 (1)(ii) and 28 C.F.R. 16.5 (1)(iv) which state as follows:
28 C.F.R. 16.5 (1)(ii) "An urgency to inform the public about an actual or alleged federal government activity. if made by a person primarily engaged in disseminating information."
28 C.F.R. 16.5 (1)(iv) matter of widespread and exceptional media interest in which there exists possible questions about the government’s integrity which affects public confidence."
Stone believes that this FOIA request is timely and pertains to collateral issues about certain facets of the FBI conduct involving what has recently become known as the “weaponized alphabet agencies” in D.C. of which there is great interest in the media which poses many questions about the government’s integrity which certainly affects the public confidence and there is an urgency to inform the public about actual or alleged federal government activity.
This FOIA request pertains to collateral issues in the State of Florida over whether or not the FBI, is just paying lip service to issues of public corruption and/or simply trying to polish their image as being tough on “Public Corruption” in Florida.
Additionally, Stone has a personal interest in events that took place at three Florida State government agencies in Tallahassee, Florida in 2011, during the time that the FBI Jacksonville office was running this advertisement, events that would fall squarely within the purview of the FBI in Tallahassee and Jacksonville, FL.
In 2011 the Maryland Attorney General Douglas Gansler acting in concert with Mark C. Sapperstein and an Edward Ko conjured up an alleged fraud scheme to extort from Stone his intellectual property, his website www.marylandcorruption.com that exposes much of the alleged criminal activities of Mark C. Sapperstein and his father Gilbert Sapperstein and their associates alleged criminal activities over approx. 20 years in Maryland, Florida, Virginia, Texas, Virginia, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania.
In 2011, Mark C. Sapperstein filed an unsigned criminal complaint against Stone with the Maryland Attorney General Gansler falsely claiming that Stone had tried to extort money from him. This was a fraud scheme by Sapper-stein, Gansler, and Sapperstein crony, Edward Ko to silence Stone and to shut down his Constitutionally protected website marylandcorruption.com.
Gansler then contacted Stone in Florida and threatened Stone with serious consequences, if he didn’t capitulate to Gansler and Sapperstein’s demands and shut down his Constitutionally protected website immediately. Stone fought back and filed a criminal complaint against Gansler, Sapperstein, and Ko with the Florida Attorney General,Pamela Bondi,(who is alleged to be a personal friend of MD. AG. Douglas Gansler), the Florida Dept. of Law Enforcement, and the Florida Governors office and they did nothing.
Then Maryland Attorney General Gansler sent a letter to Stone stating that Sapperstein wanted to settle with Stone, and to please stop referring to Mark C. Sapperstein as organized crime.
Stone politely told Gansler, Sapperstein and Ko to “go pound sand”, and MD. AG. Gansler, Mark C. Sapperstein, and Ko stuck their tails between their legs and whimpered away.
The website www.marylandcorruption.com continues to operate and to expose the corruption at the FBI, DOJ, colluding with the politically well-connected Mark C. and Gilbert Sapperstein and associates as they continue to operate their alleged domestic and international crime syndicate “under color of law” with impunity.
Furthermore, in 2011 the State of Florida was listed as one of the most corrupt states in the USA. Stone was raised in the State of Florida and has lived in the State of Florida for approx. 35 years, and as a Florida taxpayer has a vested interest in knowing whether the FBI is doing an effective job of combatting “Public Corruption” in a state overwhelmed by political corruption.
By 2015 with a D- rating Florida was still considered one of the “Most Corrupt” states in the USA. http://www.publicintegrity.org/2015/11/09/18362/florida-gets-d-grade-2015-state-integrity-investigation
Stone has spent many hours and much money over the past 20 years trying to expose public corruption in Florida, Maryland, Washington D.C. etc and simply wishes to know how effective the FBI project was to fight corruption in Tallahassee, the capitol of Florida. The FBI project was financed with federal/state tax dollars and Stone has a right to know.
Without these documents we can only guess as to whether or not it was a worthwhile project. It could have been wildly successful like the FBI ABSCAM case, which was so successful in catching both Republicans and Democrats, that Congress threatened to withdraw funding from the FBI if they didn’t shut down ABSCAM. Or maybe the FBI project received so few responses it was not considered worthwhile.
871 NE Dixie Hwy.
Jensen Beach, FL. 34957
Cellphone 772 834 6175
Please do not reply to this e-mail, as this account is not monitored. To ensure a prompt reply, please direct any inquiries to the contact information listed in the correspondence provided to you. Thank you.
A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.
A copy of documents responsive to the request.