The Justice Department was sued on Thursday by The Heritage Foundation's Oversight Project over claims the DOJ failed to comply with Freedom of Information Act requests for documents that explain why it ignored protests outside Supreme Court justices' homes earlier this year.
The protests began following a leaked draft ruling that the high court intended to overturn the landmark 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that outlawed abortion nationwide.
"The requests sought documents and communications regarding the recent intimidatory protests carried out by radical abortion supporters outside the homes of Supreme Court justices in the wake of the leaked Dobbs draft decision and later the court's official ruling in the case," Heritage said in a press release announcing the lawsuit.
"The American people deserve to know why Joe Biden and Attorney General Merrick Garland not only refused to publicly and unequivocally condemn this behavior, but also why they continue not to prosecute or hold accountable those who facially broke the law in an attempt to influence the proceedings of the Supreme Court," Roman Jankowski, senior investigative counsel for the Oversight Project, said in a statement.
"We think there are answers to those questions in the documents we have requested, and we have a right by law to those documents," he said.
The lawsuit focuses on U.S. Code Section 1507, which makes it illegal to picket or parade "in or near a building housing a court of the United States, or in or near a building or residence occupied or used by such judge, juror, witness, or court officer" with the intent of influencing the outcome of a case.
Heritage notes that Section 1507 has been used relatively recently to prosecute protesters who disrupted oral arguments before the Supreme Court.
Heritage's Oversight Project said it requested records from various offices within the Department of Justice, including the Office of the Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, the FBI, and the U.S. Marshals Service. Multiple deadlines have been missed, according to Heritage, even though "expedited processing" was granted.
Following the leak of the draft decision, Heritage said, "Radical abortion supporters appear to have violated state and federal law by protesting outside the homes of Supreme Court justices, with Maryland police even arresting a man who claimed he was going to attempt to assassinate Justice Brett Kavanaugh.
"Administration officials failed to publicly condemn the behavior for days, and still have not prosecuted those who seem to have broken the law."
As of late Thursday afternoon, the DOJ had not responded to Newsmax's request for comment.
© 2023 Newsmax. All rights reserved.