Information, records on Bernard Fensterwald

John Kirsch filed this request with the Federal Bureau of Investigation of the United States of America.
Tracking #

145-FOI-14111; 1332364-000

Status
Completed

Communications

From: John Kirsch

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

Under the Freedom of Information Act, I request the case file on Bernard Fensterwald, who died in 1991. This is a link to his obituary in The New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/1991/04/04/obituaries/bernard-fensterwald-69-lawyer-for-james-ray-and-watergate-spy.html

I also request information and records of his contacts with the FBI, in particular any information and records pertaining to the Mary Ferrell Foundation, a 501c3 private foundation located in Ipswich, MA. or to Mary Ferrell, a Dallas resident and Kennedy assassination researcher who passed away in 2004. This is a link to Ferrell's obituary in The Dallas Morning News: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/dallasmorningnews/obituary.aspx?n=mary-elizabeth-mchughes-ferrell&pid=1958846

Fensterwald was a lawyer for James Earl Ray, the man convicted of assassinating Dr. Martin Luther King, and James McCord, the Watergate burglar. Fensterwald also submitted document requests to the CIA about the assassination of President Kennedy (and, possibly, other events) and provided the documents he received to his friend, Mary Ferrell, mentioned in the previous paragraph.

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, 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,

John Kirsch

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, 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,

John Kirsch

From: John Kirsch

I forgot to include this in my FOIA request. I also request processing notes for any FOIA requests filed by Bernard Fensterwald between Jan 1, 1966 and the date of his death.

Thanks,
John Kirsch

From: Sobonya, David P.

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

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>/ or http://www.fbi.gov/foia/. If you require additional assistance please contact the Public Information Officer.

Thank you,

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

From: Sobonya, David P.

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

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>/ or http://www.fbi.gov/foia/. If you require additional assistance please contact the Public Information Officer.

Thank you,

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

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation - FBI

An interim response, stating the request is being processed.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Jan. 3, 2015. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #1319244-000.

Thank you for your help.

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

Due to the voluminous requests that the FBI receives on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis, requesters are encouraged to utilize the online option to Check the Status of Your FOIPA Request by following the instructions in the attached sample. The last status update was performed on February 11, 2015.

Upon entering your FOIPA Request Number, the requester will be provided “ONE” of the following STATUS RESULTS:

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is processing your request in accordance to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act guidelines. *The Disclosure analyst is making a line by line, page by page review of the records to determine if any redactions are required pursuant to subsections of Title 5, U. S. Code, Section 552 and 552a. Upon completion, the records are forwarded to a supervisor for review, if approved, a release will be forthcoming.

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is searching the FBI’s indices for potentially responsive documents. You may be contacted via form letter for all fees and/or negotiation issues that may apply. *Requests are received by Initial Processing (IP) where they are opened, assigned a FOIPA Request Number and correspondence mailed to the requester. The IP analyst searches for, retrieves and reviews potentially responsive records. If responsive records are located, they are forwarded to Disclosure for processing.

The FBI’s FOIPA Program has identified potential responsive information to your request and awaits assignment to a Government Information Specialist (GIS) for further processing. *Responsive information was located and has been forwarded to the “Backlog” where the request awaits assignment to a GIS for processing.

The information you have requested is part of a previously requested subject matter and will be preprocessed in accordance to the prior releasable information. *A previous request has already been made for the subject matter.

The request is currently in appeal status with the Office of Information Policy (OIP). *The FBI is not involved in the appeals process so please contact OIP’s Customer Service regarding appeal matters at (202) 514-3642.

The request is currently in litigation with Federal Court

The FOIPA number entered has been closed, and appropriate correspondence has been sent to the address on file. *Correspondence and/or a release of records were recently mailed. If you recently had a change of address please contact us at foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov<mailto:foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov>.

Please contact me if you require further assistance.

Thank you,

*Material is provided for information purposes

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

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Jan. 3, 2015. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #1319244-000.

Thank you for your help.

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

Due to the voluminous requests that the FBI receives on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis, requesters are encouraged to utilize the online option to Check the Status of Your FOIPA Request by following the instructions in the attached sample. The last status update was performed on March 11, 2015.

Upon entering your FOIPA Request Number, the requester will be provided “ONE” of the following STATUS RESULTS:

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is processing your request in accordance to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act guidelines. *The Disclosure analyst is making a line by line, page by page review of the records to determine if any redactions are required pursuant to subsections of Title 5, U. S. Code, Section 552 and 552a. Upon completion, the records are forwarded to a supervisor for review, if approved, a release will be forthcoming.

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is searching the FBI’s indices for potentially responsive documents. You may be contacted via form letter for all fees and/or negotiation issues that may apply. *Requests are received by Initial Processing (IP) where they are opened, assigned a FOIPA Request Number and correspondence mailed to the requester. The IP analyst searches for, retrieves and reviews potentially responsive records. If responsive records are located, they are forwarded to Disclosure for processing.

The FBI’s FOIPA Program has identified potential responsive information to your request and awaits assignment to a Government Information Specialist (GIS) for further processing. *Responsive information was located and has been forwarded to the “Backlog” where the request awaits assignment to a GIS for processing.

The information you have requested is part of a previously requested subject matter and will be preprocessed in accordance to the prior releasable information. *A previous request has already been made for the subject matter.

The request is currently in appeal status with the Office of Information Policy (OIP). *The FBI is not involved in the appeals process so please contact OIP’s Customer Service regarding appeal matters at (202) 514-3642.

The request is currently in litigation with Federal Court

The FOIPA number entered has been closed, and appropriate correspondence has been sent to the address on file. *Correspondence and/or a release of records were recently mailed. If you recently had a change of address please contact us at foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov<mailto:foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov>.

Please contact me if you require further assistance.

Thank you,

*Material is provided for information purposes

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

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Jan. 3, 2015. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #1319244-000.

Thank you for your help.

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

Due to the voluminous requests that the FBI receives on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis, requesters are encouraged to utilize the online option to Check the Status of Your FOIPA Request by following the instructions in the attached sample. The last status update was performed on April 15, 2015.

Upon entering your FOIPA Request Number, the requester will be provided “ONE” of the following STATUS RESULTS:

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is processing your request in accordance to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act guidelines. *The Disclosure analyst is making a line by line, page by page review of the records to determine if any redactions are required pursuant to subsections of Title 5, U. S. Code, Section 552 and 552a. Upon completion, the records are forwarded to a supervisor for review, if approved, a release will be forthcoming.

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is searching the FBI’s indices for potentially responsive documents. You may be contacted via form letter for all fees and/or negotiation issues that may apply. *Requests are received by Initial Processing (IP) where they are opened, assigned a FOIPA Request Number and correspondence mailed to the requester. The IP analyst searches for, retrieves and reviews potentially responsive records. If responsive records are located, they are forwarded to Disclosure for processing.

The FBI’s FOIPA Program has identified potential responsive information to your request and awaits assignment to a Government Information Specialist (GIS) for further processing. *Responsive information was located and has been forwarded to the “Backlog” where the request awaits assignment to a GIS for processing.

The information you have requested is part of a previously requested subject matter and will be preprocessed in accordance to the prior releasable information. *A previous request has already been made for the subject matter.

The request is currently in appeal status with the Office of Information Policy (OIP). *The FBI is not involved in the appeals process so please contact OIP’s Customer Service regarding appeal matters at (202) 514-3642.

The request is currently in litigation with Federal Court

The FOIPA number entered has been closed, and appropriate correspondence has been sent to the address on file. *Correspondence and/or a release of records were recently mailed. If you recently had a change of address please contact us at foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov<mailto:foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov>.

Please contact me if you require further assistance.

Thank you,

*Material is provided for information purposes

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

From: John Kirsch

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on Jan. 3, 2015. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed. You had assigned it reference number #1319244-000.

Thank you for your help.

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

Due to the voluminous requests that the FBI receives on a daily, weekly, monthly and annual basis, requesters are encouraged to utilize the online option to Check the Status of Your FOIPA Request by following the instructions in the attached sample. The last status update was performed on May 6, 2015.

Upon entering your FOIPA Request Number, the requester will be provided “ONE” of the following STATUS RESULTS:

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is processing your request in accordance to the Freedom of Information and Privacy Act guidelines. *The Disclosure analyst is making a line by line, page by page review of the records to determine if any redactions are required pursuant to subsections of Title 5, U. S. Code, Section 552 and 552a. Upon completion, the records are forwarded to a supervisor for review, if approved, a release will be forthcoming.

The FBI’s FOI/PA Program is searching the FBI’s indices for potentially responsive documents. You may be contacted via form letter for all fees and/or negotiation issues that may apply. *Requests are received by Initial Processing (IP) where they are opened, assigned a FOIPA Request Number and correspondence mailed to the requester. The IP analyst searches for, retrieves and reviews potentially responsive records. If responsive records are located, they are forwarded to Disclosure for processing.

The FBI’s FOIPA Program has identified potential responsive information to your request and awaits assignment to a Government Information Specialist (GIS) for further processing. *Responsive information was located and has been forwarded to the “Backlog” where the request awaits assignment to a GIS for processing.

The information you have requested is part of a previously requested subject matter and will be preprocessed in accordance to the prior releasable information. *A previous request has already been made for the subject matter.

The request is currently in appeal status with the Office of Information Policy (OIP). *The FBI is not involved in the appeals process so please contact OIP’s Customer Service regarding appeal matters at (202) 514-3642.

The request is currently in litigation with Federal Court

The FOIPA number entered has been closed, and appropriate correspondence has been sent to the address on file. *Correspondence and/or a release of records were recently mailed. If you recently had a change of address please contact us at foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov<mailto:foiparequest@ic.fbi.gov>.

Please contact me if you require further assistance.

Thank you,

*Material is provided for information purposes

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

From: John Kirsch


I request an estimated completion date for this FOIA request, which I submitted on 1/3/2015. (Today is 6/8/2015.) If an estimated completion date is not provided, I will have to consider the possibility that this is a case of constructive denial. John Kirsch

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

The estimated date of completion which the FBI will complete action on the request is December 9, 2015.

Please contact me if you require further assistance.

NOTE: Interim releases that generally equal approximately 500 pages are made for medium and large track cases.

Thank you,

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

From: John Kirsch

Mr. Sobonya: Would it be possible for me to get an interim release of material for this FOIA? John Kirsch

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

Interim releases are not made for small requests.

Thank you,

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

From: John Kirsch

In your 6/9 response to me, you provided an estimated completion date of Dec. 9, 2015 for my FOIA request, which I submitted on 1/3/2015. If my request is "small," as you say, then why does the FBI require nearly a year to complete it? John Kirsch

From: Sobonya, David P. (RMD) (FBI)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,

This is in reference to your Freedom of Information Act/Privacy (FOIPA) request concerning miscellaneous inquiries. The FOIPA does not require federal agencies to answer inquiries, create records, conduct research, or draw conclusions concerning queried data. Rather the FOIA requires agencies to provide access to reasonably described, nonexempt records. The questions posed in the reference letter are not FOIPA requests because they do not comply with the FOIPA and its regulations.

Please resubmit your FOIPA request with the proper information and your request will be forwarded to Initial Processing for review.

Please contact your local FBI Field Office to report matters concerning Federal offenses as the Record/Information Dissemination Section is not an investigative branch of the FBI.

If you require additional assistance please contact me.

Thank you,

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

From: John Kirsch

Mr. Sobonya, in reference to your communication dated 6/22/2015 -- Are you saying that I need to resubmit the FOIA request I submitted on 1/3/2015? If so, can you please tell me why the FBI believes this is necessary? The bureau has had this FOIA since 1/3/2015. Why, specifically, are you now saying that I need to rework and resubmit it? If the FBI is referencing the note I sent on 6/21/2015, where I asked why the FBI is taking so long to process what the agency considers a "small" request -- that was simply a question and was not intended to be part of the FOIA I submitted on 1/3/2015.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A first set of responsive documents from the agency, with more to be sent at a specified date.

  • 1319244-0 - HQ 259-764 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-0 - 47-HQ-55254 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-0 - 77-HQ-44206 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-0 - 105-HQ-44852 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

From: John Kirsch

Mr. Hardy: In your June 30, 2015 cover letter granting my FOIA request, you stated that additional material responsive to my request was found at FBI Headquarters in FBI file 197-HQ-4238 regarding civil suits and/administrative claims and that I should advise the Bureau if I wanted that material to be processed pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby inform you that I do want that material processed pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act. John Kirsh

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

An interim response, stating the request is being processed.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

  • 1319244-1 - 77-HQ-44206 serial 50x - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-1 - 77-HQ-44206 serial 34 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-1 - 77-HQ-44206 serial 51 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-1 - 77-HQ-44206 serial 45 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

  • 1319244-1 - 77-HQ-44206 serial 30 - Section 1 Serial 1 COVER SHEETMediaPage.PDF

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A copy of documents responsive to the request.

From: Federal Bureau of Investigation

A cover letter granting the request and outlining any exempted materials, if any.

From: Cecil, Angie E. (CIV)

Dear Mr. Kirsch,
Please find attached the Civil Division's response to a recent referral of records responsive to your FOIA request to the FBI.
Regards,

Angie E. Cecil
Senior FOIA Counsel
Office of FOIA, Records, and E-discovery
Office of the Assistant Attorney General
Department of Justice-Civil Division

Direct (202) 616-4678

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