Articles Posted in Immigration Law

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The Fifth Circuit granted a petition for panel rehearing and withdrew its prior opinion, substituting the following opinion. Petitioner appealed the BIA's decision that he was eligible for deportation pursuant to 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(2)(B)(i) for possessing a controlled substance in violation of Oklahoma law. This circuit has held that the realistic probability test applies whenever the categorical approach is employed. See United States v. Castillo-Rivera, 853 F.3d 218 (5th Cir. 2017) (en banc), cert. denied, No. 17-5054, 2017 WL 2855255 (Dec. 4, 2017). The court held that, given that the state statute is facially broader than its federal analog, Castillo-Rivera suggests that petitioner could prevail only if the realistic probability test was satisfied. However, petitioner failed to address the question in his brief on appeal, and thus waived the only argument available to him in the wake of Castillo-Rivera. Accordingly, the court denied the petition for review. View "Rodriguez Vazquez v. Sessions" on Justia Law

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The Fifth Circuit upheld Senate Bill 4 (SB4), a Texas law that forbids "sanctuary city" policies throughout the state, and held that SB4's provisions, with one exception, did not violate the Constitution. The court held that none of SB4's provisions conflict with federal law where the assistance-cooperation, the status-inquiry, and the information-sharing provisions were not conflict preempted. The court affirmed the district court's injunction against enforcement of Section 752.053(a)(1) only as it prohibits elected officials from "endors[ing] a policy under which the entity or department prohibits or materially limits the enforcement of immigration laws." The court held that plaintiffs failed to establish that every seizure authorized by the ICE-detainer mandate violated the Fourth Amendment; the "materially limits" phrase had a clear core and was not void for vagueness; and plaintiffs' "commandeering" argument failed. Accordingly, the court vacated in large part the district court's preliminary injunction and remanded with instructions to dismiss the vacated provisions. View "City of El Cenizo v. Texas" on Justia Law

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The Fifth Circuit dismissed the petition for review of the BIA's decision affirming the IJ's denial of petitioner's motion to reopen. The court held that whether petitioner diligently pursued her rights to warrant equitable tolling was a question of fact and the jurisdictional bar of 8 U.S.C. 1252(a)(2)(C) applied. Therefore, the court lacked jurisdiction to consider the petition. View "Penalva v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Fifth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's order upholding the denial of petitioner's motion to reopen removal proceedings. The court held that the Board did not abuse its discretion in dismissing petitioner's appeal and in affirming the IJ's decision finding that she received proper notice of her removal hearing and failed to show a change in country conditions. View "Garcia Nunez v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Fifth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's order upholding the denial of petitioner's motion to reopen removal proceedings. The court held that the Board did not abuse its discretion in dismissing petitioner's appeal and in affirming the IJ's decision finding that she received proper notice of her removal hearing and failed to show a change in country conditions. View "Garcia Nunez v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court's grant of summary judgment against plaintiff in an action seeking derivative U.S. citizenship. The court held that plaintiff could not prove his derivative citizenship as a matter of law under the former Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. 301(a)(7), 309(a). Plaintiff was born out of wedlock in Mexico and is the son of an U.S. citizen father and Mexican national mother. In this case, plaintiff could not prove as a matter of law that he was legitimated before turning twenty-one years old and thus could not claim derivative citizenship. View "Gonzalez-Segura v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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Petitioner, a native and citizen of Honduras, sought review of the BIA's decision denying his motion to reopen his removal proceedings so that he could apply for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). In this case, petitioner filed his motion to reopen ten years after the immigration court issued his prior removal order, and thus failed to comply with the ninety-day statutory deadline. The Fifth Circuit held that it lacked jurisdiction over petitioner's collateral challenge to the prior removal order; the court lacked jurisdiction to consider petitioner's claim that conditions in his country of origin had materially changed; petitioner's contention that the BIA violated his due process rights was unavailing, because this court has held that an alien has no liberty interest in a motion to reopen and therefore cannot establish a due process violation in the context of reopening proceedings; and the court rejected petitioner's remaining claims. Accordingly, the court dismissed in part and denied in part the petition for review. View "Mejia v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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Petitioner, a native and citizen of Honduras, sought review of the BIA's decision denying his motion to reopen his removal proceedings so that he could apply for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). In this case, petitioner filed his motion to reopen ten years after the immigration court issued his prior removal order, and thus failed to comply with the ninety-day statutory deadline. The Fifth Circuit held that it lacked jurisdiction over petitioner's collateral challenge to the prior removal order; the court lacked jurisdiction to consider petitioner's claim that conditions in his country of origin had materially changed; petitioner's contention that the BIA violated his due process rights was unavailing, because this court has held that an alien has no liberty interest in a motion to reopen and therefore cannot establish a due process violation in the context of reopening proceedings; and the court rejected petitioner's remaining claims. Accordingly, the court dismissed in part and denied in part the petition for review. View "Mejia v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law

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The Fifth Circuit denied a petition for review of the BIA's decision finding petitioner eligible for deportation under 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(2)(B)(i) for possessing a controlled substance in violation of Oklahoma law. Petitioner challenged both the determination that the Oklahoma schedule of controlled substances was a categorical match to the federal schedule and that in order to terminate his order of removal he was required to show a "realistic probability" that Oklahoma actually prosecutes cases involving substances not included in the federal schedules. The Fifth Circuit has held that the realistic probability test applies whenever the categorical approach is employed. See United States v. Castillo-Rivera, 853 F.3d 218 (5th Cir. 2017) (en banc). The court held that petitioner waived this viable argument under Castillo-Rivera, because he never suggested that the realistic probability test was satisfied in this case. Because petitioner waived his only viable argument, the court denied relief. View "Rodriguez Vazquez v. Sessions" on Justia Law

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The Fifth Circuit denied the petition for review of the BIA's decision affirming the IJ's denial of petitioner's application for asylum, withholding of removal, and protections under the Convention Against Torture (CAT). Petitioner argued that his diagnosis with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder should have been taken into consideration when determining whether inconsistencies in his statements rendered his testimony not credible. The court held that petitioner failed to show that no reasonable fact-finder could make an adverse credibility finding and thus the court must defer to the determinations of the IJ and BIA that his testimony was not credible. View "Singh v. Sessions" on Justia Law

Posted in: Immigration Law