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Court Case Update (6/29/05)
Posted on June 29, 2005

Suit - FOIA Litigation


Litigation Against the CIA

Being Fought Simultaneously in the

U.S. District Court AND - U.S. District Court of Appeals

Washington, DC

The Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) law suit against the CIA for documentation on both unreturned and surviving POW/MIAs was filed in May 1998. After five years the case being heard by Judge Paul Friedman was wrongly thrown out of court in November 2003 for noncompliance with the courts order for agreement to pay the CIA for document searches. The case was refilled in U.S. District Court (Case No. 04-0814) in May 2004; a Notice of Appeal, on the matters relating to the case dismissal, was also filed before the U.S. District Court of Appeals (CASE No. 04-5235) in May 2004.

Since May 1998 the first attorney retained in this case resigned in August 2000, not before Judge Friedman revealed that the CIA and the Defense POW/MIA Office both had information on the last known location of a live POW. Attorney's Jim Lesar, and Mark Zaid, both experienced FOIA lawyers, were retained in September 2000. For a lawyer to take over a case takes extensive work. The documentation on briefs in this case take up a full file cabinet draw plaus a pile over a foot high.

On May 2005 motions for the U.S. District Court for the continuing case were to be heard before Judge Henry Kennedy. Although a number of Veteran groups were present to observe the proceeding the case was postponed until August 11, 2005 because there was a new U.S. Attorney taking over the case.

This year, On June 21, 2005, one of our attorneys Mark Zaid withdrew from the case. Freedom of Information Act cases require long term commitment, yet lawyers withdraw taking their knowledge and experience in the case with them. We still have one attorney left. Mr. Lesar is 66 years old, in his legal career except for less then a dozen cases, he has specialized almost exclusively in FOIA cases.

On June 21, 2005 Attorney Jim Lesar filed a 40 page brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals. He spent 4 ˝ days writing the appeal; this is in addition to his research over the past year. This information is available on our Web site www.powfoia.org .

A friend of Court brief (Brief of Amicus Curaie) was also filed in case. Carol Hrdlicka, wife of POW/MIA Col. David Hrdlicka, filed the brief to inform the court of intended compliance that were not part of the court record.

The Court of Appeals should rule on this case within the next year.

Roger Hall
301/587-5055
Executive Director
POW/MIA FOIA Litigation Account
rhall 8715@aol.com
P.O. 8044
Silver Spring, MD 20907

There's another more to this case. That is the matter of backing it to a successful completion. The case has already taken seven years. This is not unusual for a FOIA case. But many financial supporters have lost interest and donations are severely down. Walking away from the case leaves us more vulnerable to the CIA and U.S. attorney's, they have vast resources, and we depend on you. A few organizations are sticking with us and they are keeping us going. Remember we are a nonprofit organization, donations are tax deductible, there are no paid employees, only the attorney and the accountant get paid. We will succeed with your help. Our dedicated focus is POW/MIAs.

Some Still Survive. Be part of the solution. Donate to keep the case going.

 
Related Links
· FOIA Litigation Suit
· More about Suit - FOIA Litigation


Most read story about Suit - FOIA Litigation:
Carol Hrdlicka - Friend of Court Brief - CIA Case


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