Judge Orders U.S. to Release Aaron Swartz’s Secret Service File

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In National

Wired

 

A federal judge in Washington, D.C. on Friday ordered the government to promptly start releasing thousands of pages of Secret Service documents about the late activist and coder Aaron Swartz, following months of roadblocks and delays.

“Defendant shall promptly release to Plaintiff all responsive documents that it has gathered thus far and shall continue to produce additional responsive documents that it locates on a rolling basis,” wrote U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly.

The order was issued in my ongoing FOIA lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security – the Secret Service’s parent agency.

It was Secret Service agents who, in 2011, investigated Swartz’ bulk downloads from the JSTOR academic database, leading to the computer hacking and wire fraud case that loomed over Swartz at the time he committed suicide in January.

That criminal case was formally dismissed after Swartz’s death. Yet in February, the Secret Servicedenied in full my request for any files it held on Swartz, citing a FOIA exemption that covers sensitive law enforcement records that are part of an ongoing proceeding. Other requestors reported receiving the same response.

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