Florida Bulldog by Dan Christensen
September 2, 2019
U.S. Attorney General William Barr has until Friday to decide whether to take the unusual step of asserting a “state secrets privilege” to conceal who tasked a pair of Saudis living in Southern California with helping two 9/11 hijackers.
The name of that person, believed to be a Saudi government official, is contained in a highly-censored October 2012 FBI summary report obtained by Florida Bulldog in 2016 during ongoing Freedom of Act litigation. The report is now at the center of a massive, consolidated civil lawsuit in New York as lawyers for thousands of 9/11 survivors and victims’ families seek to obtain an uncensored copy, with the name, in the face of what they say is FBI stonewalling.
“We feel like there has been a lot of delay in the case, delay in terms of a response on certain key issues in the case, first and foremost of which is the 2012 FBI report,” plaintiffs’ attorney Steven Pounian told a federal judge last May.
Pounian and other lawyers now have asked the court to compel the FBI to produce an unredacted copy of the 2012 report. The judge has given the government until Sept. 6 to “submit any affidavits or declaration in support of assertions of privilege (state secrets or otherwise) or any other grounds to withhold information from the 2012 summary report.”