Key date for lawsuit passes without DHS response

Earlier this year, Access reported the unlawful takedown of the Mexican protest website at the behest of the Mexican government and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Our partner in Mexico, attorney Luis Fernando Garcia of digital rights group R3D, filed a lawsuit against the Mexican government to seek accountability and redress for this act of political censorship.

We are dismayed to report that the case was dismissed yesterday, after all Mexican authorities denied involvement, and DHS provided no information on who was responsible for the takedown request.

Attorney Garcia argues that either the request originated from a DHS official, which is very unlikely, “or a Mexican agency lied to the judge. In either case, the U.S. government holds the key to answer this question.”

Despite repeated requests from Access, local partners, and journalists on both sides of the border, DHS has refused to comment.

Access Policy Counsel Peter Micek said, “We’ve asked some very basic questions about how this request was processed. That DHS has stonewalled is very upsetting, and makes us wonder whether this type of backdoor political censorship happens more often than we know.”

Access, R3D, and will continue to push for transparency and accountability for this act of censorship and now for the probable obstruction of justice committed by Mexican authorities.

Garcia adds, “We hope the United States government stops covering up this issue and starts living up to its words regarding ‘Internet Freedom’.”