Created by CREW

CREW: Department of Justice: Regarding Records Related to United States vs. Philip Morris, Inc., et al.

On June 17, 2009, the Department of Justice made its first substantive response to CREW’s three and one-half year old Freedom of Information Act request seeking documents related to DOJ’s decision to reduce from $130 billion to $10 billion the amount it was seeking in penalties in its lawsuit against the tobacco companies. The pages are blacked out almost in their entirety, with the exception of a small amount of information indicating who the memo or email was from or to – information DOJ claimed it was releasing in its “administrative discretion.” DOJ made the redactions pursuant to Exemption 5, despite Attorney General Holder’s March 19, 2009 memo to all executive branch agencies mandating a presumption of openness.