Social Media For Fake Universities

Aaron Sankin filed this request with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the United States of America.
Est. Completion None
Status
Awaiting Response

Communications

From: Aaron Sankin


To Whom It May Concern:

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

I am seeking all documents and records relating to social media posts and online advertisements made by ICE employees--and associated contractors--related to fake universities created by the agency as part of an immigration fraud sting operation. I am seeking both internal communications, communications with private-sector firms, as well as communications with other state or federal government agencies.

The universities are:

University of Northern New Jersey
University of Farmington

While these are the only two schools I am aware of in the program, please consider this request to also include any and all other colleges crated by ICE for these purposes.

The types of content I am seeking documents about include (but are not limited to) posts on:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Instagram
Google's ad networks
Other ad networks

Please limit the date range for this request to January 1, 2012 and the date when the search for responsive records is conducted.

I seek all responsive records regardless of format, medium, or physical characteristics. In conducting your search, please understand the term “communications” in its broadest sense, to include any written, typed, recorded, graphic, printed, or audio material. I seek records of any kind, including electronic records, audiotapes, videotapes, and photographs, as well as letters, emails, facsimiles, telephone messages, voice mail messages and transcripts, notes, or minutes of any meetings, telephone conversations or discussions. Our request includes any attachments to these records. No category of material should be omitted from search, collection, and production.

Please place a preservation hold on all documents related to this request.

In the event some portions of the requested records are properly exempt from disclosure, please disclose any reasonably segregable nonexempt portions of the requested records. If it is your position that a document contains non-exempt segments, but that those non-exempt segments are so dispersed throughout the document as to make segregation impossible, please state what portion of the document is non-exempt, and how the material is dispersed throughout the document. Claims of non-segregability must be made with the same degree of detail as required for claims of exemptions in a Vaughn index. If a request is denied in whole, please state specifically that it is not reasonable to segregate portions of the record for release.

I am a reporter with the Markup, a nonprofit news organization. As I member of the media, I am seeking a fee waiver for costs associated with this request.

I am seeking expedited processing on this request.

Expedited processing is to be granted under the federal statute “in cases in which the person requesting the records demonstrates a compelling need” or “in other cases determined by the agency.” As defined by statute, “compelling need” means that (a) “failure to obtain requested records on an expedited basis Expedited processing is to be granted under the federal statute “in cases in which the person requesting the records demonstrates a compelling need” or “in other cases determined by the agency.” As defined by statute, “compelling need” means that (a) “failure to obtain requested records on an expedited basis under this paragraph could reasonably be expected to pose an imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an individual”; or (b) “with respect to a request made by a person primarily engaged in disseminating information, urgency to inform the public concerning actual or alleged Federal Government activity.”

I submit that the responsive records are central to ongoing news coverage at a wide variety of local and national media outlets, thus constituting a matter of a current exigency to the American public. Below is a sample of this recent coverage:

https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2019/11/27/ice-arrested-250-foreign-students-fake-university-metro-detroit/4277686002/

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/31/us/farmington-university-arrests-ice.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/01/31/ice-set-up-fake-university-hundreds-enrolled-not-realizing-it-was-sting-operation/

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,

Aaron Sankin

From: Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Submitted on Wednesday, November 27, 2019 - 22:49
Submitted by user: Anonymous
Submitted values are:

Select the DHS component you wish to submit your request to: : U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
Title:
First Name: Aaron
Middle Initial:
Last Name: Sankin
Suffix:
Email Address: requests@muckrock.com
Country: United States
Address 1: MuckRock News, DEPT MR 83858
Address 2: 411A Highland Ave
City: Somerville
State: Massachusetts
Zip Code: 02144
Telephone Number: 617-299-1832
Fax Number:
Are you requesting records on yourself? No
If yes, you must check the perjury statement:
By initialing here you are providing your electronic signature.:
Please describe the records you are seeking as clearly and precisely as
possible:
To Whom It May Concern:

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

I am seeking all documents and records relating to social media posts and
online advertisements made by ICE employees--and associated
contractors--related to fake universities created by the agency as part of an
immigration fraud sting operation. I am seeking both internal communications,
communications with private-sector firms, as well as communications with
other state or federal government agencies.

The universities are:

University of Northern New Jersey
University of Farmington

While these are the only two schools I am aware of in the program, please
consider this request to also include any and all other colleges crated by
ICE for these purposes.

The types of content I am seeking documents about include (but are not
limited to) posts on:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Instagram
Google's ad networks
Other ad networks

Please limit the date range for this request to January 1, 2012 and the date
when the search for responsive records is conducted.

I seek all responsive records regardless of format, medium, or physical
characteristics. In conducting your search, please understand the term
“communications” in its broadest sense, to include any written, typed,
recorded, graphic, printed, or audio material. I seek records of any kind,
including electronic records, audiotapes, videotapes, and photographs, as
well as letters, emails, facsimiles, telephone messages, voice mail messages
and transcripts, notes, or minutes of any meetings, telephone conversations
or discussions. Our request includes any attachments to these records. No
category of material should be omitted from search, collection, and
production.

Please place a preservation hold on all documents related to this request.

In the event some portions of the requested records are properly exempt from
disclosure, please disclose any reasonably segregable nonexempt portions of
the requested records. If it is your position that a document contains
non-exempt segments, but that those non-exempt segments are so dispersed
throughout the document as to make segregation impossible, please state what
portion of the document is non-exempt, and how the material is dispersed
throughout the document. Claims of non-segregability must be made with the
same degree of detail as required for claims of exemptions in a Vaughn index.
If a request is denied in whole, please state specifically that it is not
reasonable to segregate portions of the record for release.

I am a reporter with the Markup, a nonprofit news organization. As I member
of the media, I am seeking a fee waiver for costs associated with this
request.

I am seeking expedited processing on this request.

Expedited processing is to be granted under the federal statute “in cases
in which the person requesting the records demonstrates a compelling need”
or “in other cases determined by the agency.” As defined by statute,
“compelling need” means that (a) “failure to obtain requested records
on an expedited basis Expedited processing is to be granted under the federal
statute “in cases in which the person requesting the records demonstrates a
compelling need” or “in other cases determined by the agency.” As
defined by statute, “compelling need” means that (a) “failure to obtain
requested records on an expedited basis under this paragraph could reasonably
be expected to pose an imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an
individual”; or (b) “with respect to a request made by a person primarily
engaged in disseminating information, urgency to inform the public concerning
actual or alleged Federal Government activity.”

I submit that the responsive records are central to ongoing news coverage at
a wide variety of local and national media outlets, thus constituting a
matter of a current exigency to the American public. Below is a sample of
this recent coverage:

https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/2019/11/27/ice-arrested-250-foreign-students-fake-university-metro-detroit/4277686002/

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/31/us/farmington-university-arrests-ice.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/01/31/ice-set-up-fake-university-hundreds-enrolled-not-realizing-it-was-sting-operation/

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,

Aaron Sankin

Upload documents directly:
https://https://www.muckrock.comhttps://accounts.muckrock.com/accounts/login/?url_auth_token=AAAVK9mH4BSG8tmO0HOip57Abyc%3A1iaAhx%3ABrSMcO2Py0KN0y-a7REeMtn6jSM&next=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.muckrock.com%2Faccounts%2Flogin%2F%3Fnext%3D%252Faccounts%252Fagency_login%252Fimmigration-and-customs-enforcement-133%252Fsocial-media-for-fake-universities-83858%252F%253Femail%253DICE-FOIA%252540dhs.gov
I am willing to pay fees for this request up to the amount of: $: 25
Select from the list below: A representative of the news media seeking
information as part of a news gathering effort and not for commercial use.
I request a waiver of all fees for this request.: I request a waiver of all
fees for this request.
Please provide an explanation for your request for a fee waiver: I am a
reporter with the Markup, a nonprofit news organization. As I member of the
media, I am seeking a fee waiver for costs associated with this request.
Please select and describe in detail if you believe your request warrants
expeditious handling: An impairment of substantial due process rights of the
requester exists.
Please provide information to support your selection:
I am seeking expedited processing on this request.

Expedited processing is to be granted under the federal statute “in cases
in which the person requesting the records demonstrates a compelling need”
or “in other cases determined by the agency.” As defined by statute,
“compelling need” means that (a) “failure to obtain requested records
on an expedited basis Expedited processing is to be granted under the federal
statute “in cases in which the person requesting the records demonstrates a
compelling need” or “in other cases determined by the agency.” As
defined by statute, “compelling need” means that (a) “failure to obtain
requested records on an expedited basis under this paragraph could reasonably
be expected to pose an imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an
individual”; or (b) “with respect to a request made by a person primarily
engaged in disseminating information, urgency to inform the public concerning
actual or alleged Federal Government activity.”

From: Immigration and Customs Enforcement

January 21, 2020 Aaron Sankin MuckRock Dept MR 83858 411A Highland Ave Somerville, MA 02144 RE:     ICE FOIA Case Number 2020-ICFO-18263
This e-mail is in regards to your November 27, 2019 ICE FOIA request for all documents and records relating to social media posts and online advertisements made by ICE employees--and associated contractors--related to fake universities created by the agency as part of an immigration fraud sting operation. I am seeking both internal communications, communications with private-sector firms, as well as communications with other state or federal government agencies.
Aftercareful review of your FOIA request, we determined that your request is toobroad in scope, did not specifically identify the records which you areseeking, or only posed questions to the agency.  Records must be describedin reasonably sufficient detail to enable government employees who are familiarwith the subject area to locate records without placing an unreasonable burdenupon the agency.  For this reason, §5.3(b) of the DHS regulations, 6C.F.R. Part 5, require that you describe the records you are seeking with asmuch information as possible to ensure that our search can locate them with areasonable amount of effort.  Whenever possible, a request should includespecific information about each record sought, such as the date, title or name,author, recipients, and subject matter of the records, if known, or the ICEprogram office you believe created and/or controls the record. TheFOIA does not require an agency to create new records, answer questions posedby requesters, or attempt to interpret a request that does not identifyspecific records. Pleaseresubmit your request containing a reasonable description of the records youare seeking.  Upon receipt of a perfected request, you will be advised asto the status of your request. Ifwe do not hear from you within 30 days from the date of this letter,we will assume you are no longer interested in this FOIA request, and the casewill be administratively closed.  Please be advised that this action isnot a denial of your request and will not preclude you from filing otherrequests in the future.

Sincerely,

ICE FOIA

From: Aaron Sankin

Hi,

I would like to amend my request.

Previously, I had requested "all documents and records relating to social media posts and online advertisements made by ICE employees--and associated contractors--related to fake universities created by the agency as part of an immigration fraud sting operation."

Instead, I want to narrow the scope to just documents and records specifically referencing social media posts and advertisements made as part of this program. In addition, I am seeking all contracts signed by the agency relating to the creation of social media content supporting these fake universities.

Please let me know if this narrows the scope of the request enough to complete it?

Thanks!

Files

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