The seven individuals apprehended for trespassing at the Quabbin Water Reserve in Belchertown, Massachusetts, just after midnight May 14, 2013 are part of an “on-going criminal matter,” according to the Massachusetts State Police.
In response to a Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) request for names, addresses, court dates, and charges filed against the seven individuals, the Office of Chief Legal Counsel for the Massachusetts State Police cited several state statutes exempting the release of information requested.
“Please be advised G.L. c. 4, XXSSXX 7 cl. 26(a) exempts from public disclosure any records that are “specifically or by necessary implication exempted from disclosure by statute.” In this instance, your request falls within this exemption since releasing the requested information would violate… the Criminal Offender Record Information (“CORI”) statute.”
The letter comes more than 3 months following an incident whereby 5 men and 2 women were apprehended for trespassing at the largest drinking water supply for the greater Boston area in the middle of the night. The 7 individuals of Singaporean, Pakistani, and Saudi Arabian decent claimed to be chemical engineering students, according to local news reports. No other information has been made public about the identities of the individuals involved.
The response letter revealed ties to a larger criminal investigation.
“…according to information provided to this office, this incident remains the subject of an on-going criminal matter.”
The Massachusetts State Police recently shared publicly their discontent with a Clerk Magistrate’s decision not to proceed with the criminal investigation of the seven individuals.
To see scans of the FOIA request & additional information, click here: Refusal to Answer