Media & Communications Law

Red Cross claims some Hurricane Sandy spending information is a trade secret

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The American Red Cross fought a public records request for information on Hurricane Sandy fundraising and spending on the ground that some of the activities are a trade secret.

Pro Publica sought information provided by the Red Cross to the New York Attorney General’s office in its investigation of the charity, Pro Publica reports. The Red Cross objected, hiring “a fancy law firm”—Gibson Dunn—to press its case, the story says.

Gibson Dunn argued that information about fundraising, internal operations and finances should be exempt from disclosure. If the information were released, Gibson Dunn said, “the American Red Cross would suffer competitive harm because its competitors would be able to mimic the American Red Cross’s business model for an increased competitive advantage.”

The Office of the Attorney General agreed to redact some information when it releases the documents.

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