October 25, 1996

Reference: F96-1718

Dear Mr. Nguyen:

This is in response to your letter dated 7 October 1996 and received in our office on 17 October 1996. This letter presents an appeal of the 2 October 1996 determination provided to you in response to your 28 August 1996 Freedom of Information Act request for:

"A copy of [this] Agency's declassified file on General Nguyen Van Hieu of the South Vietnamese Army". You stated that "[h]e is [your] brother and was killed in his office at the headquarters of the Third Corps stationed at Bien Hoa, where he held the position of Deputy Commander of the Third Corps, two weeks before the fall of Saigon into the hands of the North Vietnamese Communist in April 1975." You further stated that"[a]t that time he was in close relationship with Mr. Richard Peters who was the American General Consul in Bien Hoa at that time."

Specifically, you are appealing our determination to neither confirm nor deny the existence on nonexistence of records responsive to your request on the basis of Freedom of Information Act exemptions (b)(1) and (b)(3).

Your appeal has been accepted and arrangements will be made for its consideration by the appropriate members of the Agency Release Panel. You will be advised of the determinations made.

In order to afford requesters the most equitable treatment possible, we have adopted the policy of handling appeals on a first-received, first-out basis. At the present time, our workload consists of approximately 420 appeals awaiting completion. In view of this, some delay in our reply must be expected, but I can assure you that every reasonable effort will be made to complete a response as soon as possible.


Lee S. Strickland, Information and Privacy Coordinator