Transparency Watch

Much judicial secrecy in Consumer Protection Safety Commission case

Two years ago, the federal Consumer Protection Safety Commission launched saferproducts.gov, an online tool for consumers to review complaints and warnings about hazardous products. Since it launched, Fair Warning reports, the first lawsuit by a business attempting to conceal a complaint is "blazing new trails in judicial secrecy."

"Thanks to closed-door hearings, sealed records and a 73-page ruling with large sections blacked out, even the most basic details are concealed. That includes the identity of the plaintiff — known only as “Company Doe” — along with its product and the incident that led to the complaint.

"Adding to the mystery, the commission — for reasons it won’t disclose — decided not to appeal a federal judge’s ruling blocking the posting of the complaint and allowing the company to remain anonymous."

Consumer groups now claim that the ruling is a violation of the public's right to know, according to Fair Warning. Read more at Fair Warning or review the documents below.

 

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