Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Federal Court Orders Hearing on Preserving Key Homeland Security Official Emails

Judicial Watch today announced a federal court hearing will be held Thursday, January 5, 2017, regarding Judicial Watch’s request that the Department of Homeland Security preserve the emails of Secretary Jeh Johnson and other top officials who used personal email accounts for government business.  Judicial Watch had filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit seeking agency records in the personal email accounts used by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Deputy Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, Chief of Staff Christian Marrone, and General Counsel Stevan Bunnell to conduct official government business (Judicial Watch v U.S. Department of Homeland Security (No. 1:16-cv-00967)).  The lawsuit already uncovered documents showing that Johnson and other top DHS officials were exempted from a strict ban placed on web-based personal email accounts despite heightened security concerns.
The order for the hearing follows a Motion for Preservation Order filed by Judicial Watch on December 22. In that filing Judicial Watch asked the court to issue a preservation order for the non-.gov emails of Johnson, Mayorkas and Bunnell because their departure from government service is anticipated upon the installation of the new administration and Homeland Security will no longer have any control over these individuals:


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