Imran and his two Pakistani brothers were paid millions of dollars for managing the IT affairs for several Democratic government officials. They were relieved of their duties in February 2017 on suspicion that they accessed specific computer networks without permission, also known as hacking.
Abid, Imran, and Jamal Awan were barred from computer networks at the House of Representatives in February 2017.
The Justice Department however is claiming it cannot produce the requested documents due to “technical difficulties.”
JW’s lawsuit also revealed there is a “related sealed criminal matter.”
Judicial Watch’s first request, filed on May 26, 2017, sought:
- All records related to any investigations or preliminary investigations involving former congressional IT support staffers Abid Awan, Imran Awan, Jamal Awan, and Hina R. Alvi. As part of this request, searches should of records [sic] should include, but not be limited to, the FBI automated indices, its older manual indices, and its Electronic Surveillance (ELSUR) Data Management System (EDMS), as well as cross-referenced files.
- All records of communication sent to or from FBI employees, officials or contractors involving the subjects in bullet item 1.
The timeframe for the requested records is May 2015 to the present.
Judicial Watch’s second request, submitted on July 3, 2018, sought:
- All records related to any investigations or preliminary investigations involving former congressional IT support staffers Abid Awan, Imran Awan, Jamal Awan, Hina R. Alvi and Rao Abbas. As part of this request, searches of records should include, but not be limited to, the FBI automated indices, its older manual indices, and its Electronic Surveillance (ELSUR) Data Management System (EDMS), as well as cross-referenced files.
- All records of communications, including but not limited to emails (whether on .gov or non-.gov email accounts), text messages, instant chats or messages on the Lync system, sent to or from FBI employees, officials or contractors involving the Awan brothers, Ms. Alvi and Mr. Abbas. Records of communications searched should include but not be limited to those between FBI officials, employees and contractors and officials with the Capitol Police, the Office of the Inspector General of the House, and the Office of the Chief Administrative Officer of the House.
Via Judicial Watch:
In August 2019, the DOJ told the court that it would begin producing records by November 5, 2019. After producing no records, on November 13, 2019 the agency told Judicial Watch that it was having “technical difficulties,” and in a recent email claimed that “difficulties with the production remain.”
In a joint status report filed on December 5, 2019, Judicial Watch reported to the court that the DOJ claimed in a phone call that it was now unable to produce any records to either of the FOIA requests “because the agency was waiting for some unspecified action by Judge [Tanya S.] Chutkan in some other matter so as to avoid having to produce records in this case.” In that same report the DOJ told the court that Judge Chutkan is “presiding over a related sealed criminal matter” that prohibits the government from releasing the requested FOIA information.
BREAKING: @JudicialWatch lawsuit reveals “technical difficulties” in producing Awan Brothers Dem IT scandal docs and disclosure of “related sealed criminal matter”! https://t.co/8RKgjlqLyc https://t.co/QOKS4z2FiL
— Tom Fitton (@TomFitton) December 11, 2019