Diocesan Migrant & Refugee Services Earns Precedent Setting Decision Before BIA
Melissa M. Lopez, staff attorney with Diocesan Migrant & Refugee Services in El Paso, TX, has earned a decision before the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) that will set a new precedent across the country. Lopez represented a legal permanent resident from Austria who had lived in the United States since 1989. In July 2007, he was convicted of bribery of a public official and sentenced to 36 months imprisonment. He was later placed in removal proceedings before the Immigration Court. The Immigration Judge ordered her client removed in September 2009.
Lopez appealed the decision, arguing that his offense was not related to commercial bribery and therefore not an aggravated felony under the Immigration and Naturalization Act (INA). The BIA agreed with Lopez and remanded the case to the Immigration Judge. The BIA decision was issued in October 2010 and has been designated as a precedent decision, meaning that it must be followed by Immigration Judges throughout the country.
*provided with permission from Diocesan Migrant & Refugee Services.
CLINIC welcomes your thoughts and comments. When leaving comments please stay on topic and be respectful of others. CLINIC reserves the right to remove posted content that is defamatory.