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Adams v. Department of Justice

In this litigation, Public Citizen represented Daniel Adams in his efforts to obtain records of the FBI’s investigation into the death of FBI agent Paul Reynolds in 1929. Paul Reynolds’ death was listed as the only unsolved murder of an active FBI agent, but Adams found evidence that Reynolds may not have been murdered at all.

The FBI withheld most of the names mentioned in the investigative file on the basis that the personal privacy of the individuals mention would be violated by disclosure — even though there was very little chance that anyone mentioned in this 1929 case was still alive. After 13 months of litigation, the FBI relented and released all of the names and identifying information in the files.