Articles Posted in Immigration Law

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During the Rwandan Genocide, the United States admitted a limited number of refugees with priority given to those who were in the most danger, including, in 1998, Ngombwa and purported members of his family. In 1998, DHS received information from prosecutors in Rwanda that Ngombwa had twice been convicted in absentia by Rwandan tribal courts for participation in the Genocide and had been named in an indictment in the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. The government proved at trial that his admission, status, and eventual naturalization were based on material falsehoods. At sentencing, the government proved to the district court’s satisfaction that the falsehoods were used to conceal Ngombwa’s participation in the Genocide. The Eighth Circuit affirmed his convictions for unlawful procurement of naturalization and conspiracy to commit the same, 18 U.S.C. 1425, 371, and his above-Guidelines sentence of 180 months. Rejecting Ngombwa’s claim his counsel was ineffective for failing to contact and interview five of his family members, the court reasoned that counsel made a strategic decision to avoid more detrimental evidence. View "United States v. Ngombwa" on Justia Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's order reversing an IJ's decision to grant petitioner withholding of removal. The court held that petitioner's proposed social group consisting of "former taxi drivers from Quezaltepeque who have witnessed a gang murder" did not constitute a cognizable particular social group. The court reasoned that the proposed social group would not be perceived, considered or recognized by Salvadoran society to be a distinct social group. In this case, petitioner failed to show that he would experience future persecution on account of a protected ground and therefore he was not entitled to withholding of removal. View "Miranda v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied petitions for review of two decisions of the BIA dismissing petitioner's appeal from the IJ's grant of voluntary departure with an alternate order of removal, and denying reconsideration. The court held that, in these circumstances, petitioner's belated appeal to the BIA was untimely because it was filed after termination of the voluntary departure period, whether or not it was timely filed under the BIA's procedural regulations. The court reasoned that any error by the BIA in not taking up this futile appeal of the alternative removal order on the merits was harmless. View "Camick v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision denying petitioner's application for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and order of removal. The court held that petitioner's prior violations of two municipal ordinances were misdemeanors that disqualified him from TPS status under 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(48)(A). The court also held that petitioner suffered no due process prejudice. View "Rubio v. Sessions" on Justia Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision upholding the IJ's denial of petitioner's application for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). The court held that petitioner's conviction for criminal sexual conduct in the third degree in violation of Minn. Stat. Sec. 609.344, subdiv.1(b) was an aggravated felony under the Immigration and Nationality Act. The court explained that a person who has been convicted under the statute has necessarily committed sexual abuse of a minor under the Act and was both removable and ineligible for asylum. View "Garcia-Urbano v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision affirming the IJ's denial of asylum, withholding of removal, and voluntary departure. The court held that the record contained sufficient facts to support the BIA's conclusion that petitioner's prior conviction under North Dakota law for unlawful entry into a vehicle was an aggravated felony attempted theft as defined by 8 U.S.C. 1101(a)(43)(U) and (G). View "Ahmed v. Sessions" on Justia Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's dismissal of petitioner's appeal of his denial of asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). The court held that petitioner did not meet his burden to propose a social group, so the immigration judge did not need to seek clarification; the IJ considered the issues raised and announced its decision in terms sufficient to enable a reviewing court to perceive that it has heard and thought and not merely reacted; the BIA did not err in finding the proposed group - Guatemalans who refused to participate in drug trafficking and spoke "out of turn" about the solicitation - was too broad and amorphous to be recognizable; and petitioner failed to establish a well-founded fear of future persecution. View "Mayorga-Rosa v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's affirmance of the IJ's decision to deny the I-751 petition, to terminate petitioner's permanent resident status, and to have her removed under 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(1)(D)(i). The court held that substantial evidence supported the finding that petitioner failed to establish that her marriage was bona fide and not entered into primarily to secure an immigration benefit. In this case, there was substantial direct evidence of the couple's intent at the time of marriage for petitioner to come to the country to enter into a sham marriage for immigration purposes. View "Sagoe v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied the petitions for review of the BIA's order denying petitioner's applications for asylum, withholding of removal, and relief under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). Petitioner, on behalf of herself and her son, claimed that her husband and a male neighbor have persecuted her on account of her membership in a particular social group as a Guatemalan woman, and will persecute her again if she returns to Guatemala. The court held that petitioner failed to establish that she suffered past persecution and that she did not have a well-founded fear of future persecution. The court explained that persecution was an extreme concept and minor beatings from her husband did not amount to persecution. Furthermore, the harassment and threats from her neighbor also did not cross the threshold to constitute persecution. Finally, petitioner has not demonstrated an entitlement to relief under the Convention Against Torture, because the record did not show more likely than not that she would be subjected to torture in Guatemala. View "Lopez-Coronado De Lopez v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Eighth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's order dismissing petitioner's appeal from the IJ's decision finding petitioner removable and denial of his applications for withholding of removal and for protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). The court held that petitioner waived his challenge to the IJ's application of the "one central reason" nexus standard to petitioner's withholding of removal application; substantial evidence supported the IJ's conclusion that petitioner's worship of Santa Muerte was not one central reason for his persecution by Mexican law enforcement; and substantial evidence supported the denial of petitioner's application for CAT protection. View "Garcia-Moctezuma v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law