The judge extended a preliminary injunction prohibiting federal agents from "arresting, threatening to arrest, or using physical force" against journalists or legal observers. An attorney working with the ACLU on the case called the court's decision "a crucial victory for civil liberties and freedom of the press."
While leading I & A, Brian Murphy compiled intelligence reports on two journalists–a New York Times reporter and Lawfare’s editor-in-chief– who had published leaked department documents. Murphy also compiled reports analyzing protesters' electronic messages that discussed tactics such as which routes to follow and how to avoid the police.
The district judge rejected the notion that journalists had no legal right to remain in an area where officers had issued an order to disperse. "Without journalists and legal observers, there is only the government’s side of the story to explain why a ‘riot’ was declared and the public streets were ‘closed’ and whether law enforcement acted properly in effectuating that order,” the judge wrote.
The suit, filed on behalf of two documentary film organizations, argues that the registration requirement violates the First Amendment, is too broad in scope, and has not been proven to be necessary to national security interests.
The civil liberties groups brought the case on behalf of five photojournalists who traveled to Mexico last year to document migrants' efforts to reach the U.S.-Mexico border. In addition to lengthy interrogation, some of the journalists say border officers compelled them to disclose photographs and notes they had taken as part of their reporting.
An NBC affiliate in San Diego and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press filed a suit under the Freedom of Information Act in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against four federal agencies. The complaint filed against the Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Citizenship and Immigration Services seeks to obtain records requested in a March, 2019 FOIA concerning an alleged secret database the federal government had created on journalists covering immigration issues at the US and Mexico border.
Throughout history, U.S. Presidents have relied on private retreats to recharge during the trials of governing. George H.W. Bush had a […]