New Jersey AG sues DOJ on Wire Act opinion reversal

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has been taking its sweet time responding to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request from New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal and he’s tired of waiting.

So Grewal is suing the DOJ to get the information he asked for in March. That month he filed a FOIA request for all DOJ documents and records pertaining to the Wire Act from 2011 to 2018.

He is specifically looking for any materials that connect casino mogul Sheldon Adelson to the DOJ and the Wire Act opinion.

Why New Jersey AG sues DOJ

Adelson, the owner of numerous casinos, has been a staunch opponent of online gambling for years. He has spent millions supporting politicians who oppose online gambling. Adelson has extensively lobbied against it.

It sparked Grewal’s FOIA request to determine how much input Adelson’s lobbying had in the DOJ’s new opinion on the Wire Act announced earlier. New Jersey and many other states affected by the Wire Act change believe Adelson’s lobbying was a key factor in the DOJ’s reversal.

Grewal filed his FOIA request in March as an expedited process request and requested a 90-day window for the information to be released. That 90-day window passed earlier this week and led to the lawsuit against the DOJ.

It appears Grewal is right to be upset about the lengthy wait. FOIA requests filed as an expedited process in the US District Court and supposed to be filled within 20 days. 

The DOJ is familiar with lawsuits pertaining to the Wire Act. They are already defending themselves against a lawsuit led by New Hampshire and organizations involved in online gambling. They want the new opinion thrown out.

The first hearing for that lawsuit was heard on April 11. The judge in that matter has not yet delivered any decisions. He is awaiting requested information from the DOJ on what the Wire Act fully covers.

Tag: New Jersey AG sues DOJ