by Judicial Watch
(Washington, DC) Judicial
Watch announced today it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
lawsuit against the United States Department of Justice for records of
communication between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and
several financial institutions about the reported transfer of financial
transactions made by people in DC, Maryland and Virginia on January 5
and January 6, 2021 (Judicial Watch v. U.S. Department of Justice (No. 1:21-cv-01216)). Last week, the FBI refused to confirm or deny any such records exist.
The lawsuit was filed after the FBI failed to respond to a February 10, 2021, FOIA request seeking:
records of communication between the FBI and any financial institution,
including but not limited to Bank of America, Citibank, Chase Manhattan
Bank, Discover, and/or American Express, in which the FBI sought
transaction data for those financial institutions’ debit and credit card
account holders who made purchases in Washington, DC, Maryland and/or
Virginia on January 5, 2021 and/or January 6, 2021.
Bank of America reportedly “actively
but secretly engaged in the hunt for extremists in cooperation with the
government” and, following the events of January 6, gave the FBI
financial records of their customers who fit the following profile:
Customers confirmed as transacting, either through bank account
debit card or credit card purchases in Washington, D.C. between 1/5 and
2. Purchases made for Hotel/Airbnb RSVPs in DC, VA, and MD after 1/6.
Any purchase of weapons or at a weapons-related merchant
between 1/7 and their upcoming suspected stay in D.C. area around
4. Airline related purchases since 1/6.
On June 8, 2021, the court overseeing the lawsuit ordered the FBI/DOJ to respond substantively to Judicial Watch’s request within 30 days.
June 17, 2021, the FBI responded to Judicial Watch’s request, stating
that the request was “too broad” and asked for “further clarification
and/or narrowing” of the request.
On June 24, 2021, Judicial Watch responded to this request by sending a news article detailing
Bank of America’s handing over transaction records to the FBI of people
in the Washington, DC area around the date of January 6.