Government Accountability

MFIA frequently represents clients seeking access to information that will improve public understanding of government operations, including law enforcement activities, that promote affirmative disclosure practices, or that enforce procedures intended to speed the release of information.  Our current cases include:

Human Rights Watch (HRW) FOIA

In collaboration with Human Rights Watch, the MFIA clinic has submitted a series of FOIAs to the U.S. military seeking documents detailing mistreatment of detainees in Afghanistan. These requests come on the heels of the commencement of an ICC investigation into these abuses. The clinic has filed the requests with all branches of the military.

Victor v. New York City Office of Trials and Hearings, et al. (N.Y. Sup.)
MFIA is working with the New York Times in an ongoing action seeking to enforce the constitutional right of access to New York state administrative proceedings involving disciplinary hearings of a corrections officer, and to defeat a claim that state law otherwise requires the proceedings to be closed.

Intellectual Property Watch v. United States Trade Representative, No. 13-cv-8955 (S.D.N.Y.)
MFIA represents Intellectual Property Watch in a federal Freedom of Information Act lawsuit seeking disclosure of records regarding negotiations over the intellectual property provisions of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement.

Crawford v. New York City Department of Information, Technology and Telecommunications, Case Nos. 104275/2012 and 157002/2015 (N.Y. Sup. )
MFIA represents Harvard Law Professor Susan Crawford as she attempts to identify which areas of New York City are most underserved by the City’s current broadband infrastructure and to determine how well the City is fulfilling its mandate to bring high-speed Internet access to lower-income neighborhoods.

Graeber v. New Haven Police Dep't et al.
Along with co-counsel Daniel Klau, MFIA represents Charlie Graeber, a journalist who is seeking access to records under Connecticut's Freedom of Information Act concerning an unsolved 1998 murder of a Yale student.  

ACLU of Southern California et al. v. LAPD
The Clinic represents the ACLU of Southern California and several other plaintiffs in a pattern and practice lawsuit that seeks to compel the Los Angeles Police Department to comply with the California Public Records Act.

Rosenberg v. Department of Defense
MFIA represents prize-winning reporter Carol Rosenberg and the Miami Herald in a FOIA lawsuit against the Department of Defense seeking access to emails sent and received by General John F. Kelly, former Secretary of Homeland Security and current White House Chief of Staff, during General Kelly’s time as commander of the U.S. Southern Command. 

For a list of previous matters, please see the MFIA Archive.