by Irvin Muchnick
George Gibney — the former Irish national swim team coach whose mid-1990s flight to the United States, after avoiding dozens of sex crime charges, is the basis of my current Freedom of Information Act litigation against the American government — appears to have applied for American citizenship in 2010.
Briefs from both sides have been submitted in my FOIA lawsuit, whose next step on the court calendar is oral arguments on January 15 before U.S. District Senior Judge Charles Breyer in San Francisco.
Previously here, in publishing the Department of Homeland Security’s “Vaughn Index” (descriptions of 98 pages of Gibney’s 102-page immigration file, plus assertions of the privacy exemptions under FOIA), I have taken note of numerous pages of law enforcement records, of evident internal administrative investigations, and of a document pertaining to a job offer to Gibney.
But for those in Ireland and the U.S. calling for a reopening of criminal cases against Gibney (including for his rape of a teen Irish swimmer on a Florida training trip not long before he acquired a visa for permanent residence in America), the core documents are his 1992 visa application, his 2010 citizenship application, and a government record later that year pertaining to the disposition of the application.
As the public record created by my FOIA case now stands, we know that Gibney submitted a Form 230 I, an application for immigration and alien registration, on August 18, 1992.
Gibney also would appear to be the person who made a “3 page Sworn Statement” on September 27, 2010. The government generated a “3 page decision discussing an N-4000 application” on December 2, 2010. Interpolating, the sworn statement is likely Gibney’s N-4000, which is an application for naturalization (citizenship). And the decision likely pertains to whether the application was proper, including in its disclosure of the criminal investigations of Gibney in his native country.
The 2010 citizenship application came during a period when Evin Daly, the Irishman who heads the Florida group One Child International, was circulating to local police agencies Irish journalist Justine McCarthy’s book Deep Deception: Ireland’s Swimming Scandals, which included voluminous information on Gibney’s crimes. The local and Irish media were picking up on the story, and his apartment in Florida was on the verge of foreclosure.
We know that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services was aware of the ongoing campaigns to bring Gibney to justice, since the only four pages of the USCIS file on him that were released to me were printouts of the Daly group’s website regarding its Gibney investigation.
There are three possible outcomes of my FOIA case. The first possibility is that the government could prevail across the board, and absolutely nothing more will be revealed beyond the Vaughn Index descriptions of withheld documents and their exemptions under FOIA. The second possibility is that I could prevail across the board, and every one of the 98 withheld pages will be ordered released, without a single line redacted. The third possibility is something in between.
GEORGE GIBNEY SERIES TO DATE