Vietnam Veterans of America et al v. Central Intelligence Agency et al

Filing 443

ORDER RE: RESPONSES TO COURTS MAY 31, 2012 ORDER. Signed by Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley on 6/7/2012. (ahm, COURT STAFF) (Filed on 6/7/2012)

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 8 FOR THE NORTHERN DISTRICT OF CALIFORNIA 9 10 Northern District of California United States District Court 11 12 VIETNAM VETERANS OF AMERICA, 13 et al., Case No.: 09-cv-0037 CW (JSC) ORDER RE: RESPONSES TO COURT’S MAY 31, 2012 ORDER Plaintiffs, 14 v. 15 16 CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY, 17 et al., 18 Defendants. 19 20 On May 31, 2012, the Court issued an order resolving all outstanding issues regarding 21 documents that Defendant Department of Veterans Affairs (“DVA”) had submitted for in 22 camera review. (Dkt. No. 436). The Court’s order provided Plaintiffs the opportunity to 23 challenge DVA’s characterization of certain documents as duplicates of documents over 24 which the Court had previously sustained DVA’s assertion of the deliberative process 25 privilege. Plaintiffs and Defendants have since filed several responses to the Court’s order. 26 (Dkt. Nos. 437, 438, 440, 442). Having reviewed the parties’ filings and the documents 27 submitted by Defendant for in camera review, the Court finds as follows with respect to the 28 four outstanding documents. 1 DVA078 1867 – this document is a duplicate of a document which the Court 2 previously reviewed and found was covered by the deliberative process privilege. Defendant 3 does not need to produce this document. DVA078 2045-2055 – is a draft PowerPoint presentation entitled Chemical and 5 Biological Exposure Claims: Concern for Edgewood Arsenal Veterans, Informative Brief by 6 the Office of Policy, dated June 2, 2006. Defendant has identified document 1607-1617 as a 7 substantive duplicate of this document. Defendant previously produced document 1607- 8 1617 to Plaintiffs in a partially redacted form and has agreed to produce DVA078 2045-2055 9 with the same redactions. Defendant argues that Plaintiffs have waived any challenge to the 10 redactions, however, because they did not specifically challenge the redactions in their initial 11 United States District Court Northern District of California 4 motion to compel. The Court finds that it is unnecessary to reach this issue because the 12 PowerPoint is also substantively similar to DVA078 09-18, a PowerPoint presentation 13 entitled Edgewood Arsenal Veteran Notification Effort, Informative Brief by the Office of 14 Policy, dated June 2, 2006, which the Court reviewed in camera and ordered Defendant to 15 produce without redactions. (Dkt. No. 423, 8:8-13). Accordingly, Defendant shall produce 16 DVA078 2045-2055 to Plaintiffs without redactions. 17 DVA078 2700-2703 – this document is a duplicate of a document which the Court 18 previously reviewed and found was covered by the deliberative process privilege. Defendant 19 does not need to produce this document. 20 DVA078 4221 – Defendant has agreed to produce this document to Plaintiffs. 21 CONCLUSION 22 Defendant shall produce the aforementioned documents to Plaintiffs by June 14, 23 2012. This Order disposes all outstanding issues regarding the Court’s in camera review of 24 documents over which Defendants asserted the deliberative process privilege. To the extent 25 that a further dispute arises regarding Defendants’ assertion of the deliberative process 26 privilege as foreshadowed in Plaintiffs’ filing (Dkt. No. 437, n. 2) the Court urges the parties 27 to consider the Court’s prior orders regarding the applicability of the deliberative process 28 privilege prior to seeking the Court’s intervention. 2 1 2 IT IS SO ORDERED. Dated: June 7, 2012 3 _________________________________ JACQUELINE SCOTT CORLEY UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 United States District Court Northern District of California 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 3

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