USMS General Counsel memo re: non-federal fugitives

Shawn Musgrave filed this request with the Department of Justice, United States Marshals of the United States of America.
Tracking # 2015USMS28520 ; DOJ-AP-2016-000307
Est. Completion None
Status
Fix Required

Communications

From: Shawn Musgrave

To Whom It May Concern:

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

The USMS General Counsel Memorandum concerning the Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives, dated May, 1, 1995.

This memorandum is noted in USMS Directive 8.10, "FUGITIVE TASK FORCES" (see http://www.usmarshals.gov/foia/directives/Fugitive_Investigations/8.10.pdf).

Given that this FOIA is submitted in my capacity as a journalist who has covered the US Marshals and other Justice Department components extensively, I request that I be categorized as a media requester for the purpose of fees. Here is a selection of my published articles on MuckRock:

https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2015/jan/12/how-843-lbs-seized-pot-lead-customs-and-border-pro/

https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2015/mar/03/us-marshals-service-conceal-key-details-millions-s/

https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2015/feb/27/while-dodging-direct-question-fbi-commits-obama-st/

https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2015/feb/27/while-dodging-direct-question-fbi-commits-obama-st/

https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2015/feb/12/fbi-and-justice-department-cant-find-drone-privacy/

https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/2015/jan/22/air-force-knows-how-many-mq-9-drones-it-wants-cant/

I have also been published in a number of other national media outlets on topics including the US Marshals and other matters pertaining to national security:

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/the-us-spent-360-million-on-border-drones-thanks-to-this-flimsy-report

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/the-air-force-says-it-needs-precisely-52-new-reaper-drones-cant-explain-why

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/do-the-fbis-drones-invade-your-privacy-sorry-thats-private

https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2013/04/08/big-brother-better-police-work-new-technology-automatically-runs-license-plates-everyone/1qoAoFfgp31UnXZT2CsFSK/story.html

www.betaboston.com/news/2014/03/05/a-vast-hidden-surveillance-network-runs-across-america-powered-by-the-repo-industry/

https://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2015/02/05/nypd-social-media-policy-allows-catfishing-with-the-proper-paperwork.html

https://www.themarshallproject.org/2014/12/03/the-pentagon-finally-details-its-weapons-for-cops-giveaway

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/do-the-fbis-drones-invade-your-privacy-sorry-thats-private

https://news.vice.com/article/fbi-agent-who-killed-boston-bombing-suspects-friend-was-twice-accused-of-police-brutality

As the requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com and pertains to a matter of considerable public interest, I further request a full waiver of all fees.

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,

Shawn Musgrave

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

An acknowledgement letter, 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 June 25, 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 #2015USMS28520.

Thank you for your help.

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

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 June 25, 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 #2015USMS28520.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

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 June 25, 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 #2015USMS28520.

Thanks for your help, and let me know if further clarification is needed.

From: Department of Justice, United States Marshals

A no responsive documents response.

From: Shawn Musgrave

Mr. Bordley -

I've received your response dated November 16, 2015 for request 2015USMS28520, in which you indicate that the requested memo could not be found.

In addition to being cited in the directive I noted in my original request, the requested May 1, 1995 memo "Memorandum concerning the Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives" is cited in the attached MOUs. As such, I find it difficult to understand how such a widely cited document does not exist.

I respectfully request that another search be done to locate the memo, or else to clarify the circumstances by which such a widely cited memo does not exist. I am making this request in lieu of submitting a formal appeal at this time, but will pursue a formal appeal, if necessary.

Thank you,
Shawn Musgrave

From: Woods, Margaret (USMS)

Mr. Musgrave,

We responded to your request 2015USMS28520 on November 16, 2015, indicating that we could not locate the record you seek. If you are not satisfied with our response, you may administratively appeal by following the instructions in our letter.

Margaret Woods
U.S. Marshals Sevice
Government Information Specialist
Office of General Counsel
CS-4, 10th Floor
Washington, DC 20530-1000
(Phone) 202-307-9490
(Fax) 703-603-7004

From: Shawn Musgrave

To Whom It May Concern:

I hereby appeal the adequacy of search by the US Marshals in response to my FOIA request dated June 15, 2015, in which I requested a particular memorandum from the USMS General Counsel. Although the memorandum in question is cited in other internal USMS documents and agreements between the USMS and other agencies, the USMS FOIA office indicates that it is unable to track down the document. This leaves me highly skeptical that their team conducted a reasonable search.

In the present FOIA request, which USMS assigned tracking number 2015USMS28520, I requested:

The USMS General Counsel Memorandum concerning the Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives, dated May, 1, 1995.

As I noted in my request, this memorandum is noted in USMS Directive 8.10, "FUGITIVE TASK FORCES" (see http://www.usmarshals.gov/foia/directives/Fugitive_Investigations/8.10.pdf):

"The Director's authority to direct and supervise all activities of the USMS is set forth in 28 USC 561 (g) and 28 CFR 0.1 11. The authority of the USMS to investigate fugitive matters as directed by the Attorney General is set forth in 28 USC 566. The authority of United States Marshals and Deputy U.S. Marshals to, "in executing the laws of the United States within a State . . . exercise the same powers
which a sheriff of the State may exercise in executing the laws thereof" is set forth in 28 USC 564.
Additional authority is derived from 18 USC 3053 and Office of Investigative Agency Policies Resolutions 2 & 15. See also "Memorandum for Howard M. Shapiro, General Counsel, Federal Bureau of Investigation" concerning the "Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives", issued by the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Legal Counsel, dated February 21, 1995. See also: Memorandum concerning the Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives, issued by the USMS Office of General Counsel, dated May, 1, 1995."

In addition to being cited in the above directive, the requested memorandum is cited in the attached MOUs.

In an agreement signed in 2013 between the USMS and Montana Department of Corrections Probation and Parole Bureau, which is titled "Violent Offender Task Force - Memorandum of Understanding":
(See also) Memorandum concerning the Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives, issued by the USMS Office of General Counsel, dated May, I, 1995."

In an undated agreement between the USMS and the Webb County District Attorney's Office regarding Regional Fugitive Task Forces: "See also: Memorandum concerning the Authority to Pursue Non-Federal Fugitives, issued by the USMS Office of General Counsel dated May 1, 1995."

In light of these explicit references to a memorandum seemingly promulgated by the USMS Office of General Counsel, I find it difficult to understand how such a document cannot be found.

I respectfully request that you remand this FOIA request back to the USMS for a good faith search and provision of responsive documents in keeping with the federal government's obligations under the Freedom of Information Act.

Respectfully,
Shawn Musgrave

From: Shawn Musgrave

Hello -

I've appealed the USMS response to this request — see below. Please advise whether your office has truly been unable to locate this publicly cited document.

Respectfully,
Shawn Musgrave

From: Shawn Musgrave

Hello -

Please advise on the below.

Best,
Shawn

From: Woods, Margaret (USMS)

Mr. Musgrave,

Since this request number is under appeal, you need to correspond with the Office of Information Privacy (OIP). OIP is the office that handles appeals. OIP’s address is in your disclosure letter.

Margaret Woods
U.S. Marshals Sevice
Government Information Specialist
Office of General Counsel
CS-4, 10th Floor
Washington, DC 20530-1000
(Phone) 202-307-9490
(Fax) 703-603-7004

From: OIP-NoReply

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.

From: OIP-NoReply@usdoj.gov

DOJ-AP-2016-000307 has been processed with the following final disposition: Closed for other reasons -- Other -- Untimely.

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