Breaking immigration news, stories about the trials and travails of an immigration attorney practicing in Tampa, Florida.
Friday, March 18, 2011
Excitement at ICE
Excitement at Immigration and Customs Enforcement
My client was pending removal to Egypt. He had been ordered removed following NSEERS registration in 2002 and his request for political asylum based on his status as a Christian who feared returning to Egypt was denied. The appeal was denied and my client filed two Motions to Reopen, but neither was successful.
He received what I call a “please come so we can arrest you” letter. He was represented by a well-respected area immigration attorney. This attorney was the kind of attorney I respect and trust. My advice would have been to never appear. Make them come get you if they want you.
This attorney told my client that he HAD to appear, and that his lawyer would fire him if he refused to go with him. In a similar case recently, another client got a letter like that. We did not appear and later received a letter to go to Immigration Court. There are times when reporting to Immigration and Customs Enforcement is a good idea – that was not one of those times.
Since my client appeared at that interview, he now has an ankle bracelet and is being forced to leave the US for Egypt on March 15, 2011. My client called me for a second opinion. He wanted to know what he could do. He understood that he could return to Egypt and come back based on his bona fide marriage to a US citizen, so long as the needed waiver of inadmissibility was granted.
My client was looking at Egypt with great fear. He knew that Mubarak was gone and that religious tensions could explode at any time. He watched the church bombing and the religious violence with great trepidation, and he had no interest in returning to Egypt, because he feared he might die there.
I told my client to tell his lawyer to file a Motion to Reopen. His lawyer refused, for reasons I do not understand. My client fired him and came to me. When I filed the Emergency Motion to Reopen and Stay, I could tell him that now he at least had a CHANCE of not leaving the US.
My client’s US citizen wife has a list of terrible maladies that should assist the BIA in making the right and correct decision. As I understand it, I need to show that there is a good chance that my motion will be successful to gain the stay.
I imagine that the Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers would let my client remain in the US no matter what the BIA does, but the deportation officers do seem quite relieved that my client has a lawyer looking out for him now.
UPDATE : My client’s Request for Emergency Stay was granted and he has a chance of remaining in the US for life.