Washington, D.C. (April 19, 2019) – The Center for Immigration Studies filed a lawsuit this week against U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to compel the agency to comply with the Center's August 13, 2018, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. CBP failed to comply with the time limit set forth in federal statute with respect to the FOIA request for information that would allow the Center to assess the potential security threat at U.S. borders.
The FOIA request seeks ten years of information pertaining to apprehensions by the Border Patrol of illegal immigrants from specific countries – those with noted terrorist activity – and encounters by CBP personnel at ports of entry of aliens from the same nations.
Todd Bensman, the Center's senior national security fellow, said, "The Center has brought this action against CBP in an effort to secure access to government data that will enable us to examine the level of the terrorism threat at our nation's borders. The extent of the movement of Special Interest Aliens (SIAs) from countries like Syria, Iraq, and Egypt is crucial to assessing terrorist potential. This endeavor is especially critical now with thousands of aliens crossing our borders, including what appears to be an increased number of SIAs."