Sunday, April 27, 2008

Guiracocha (not precedential): Immigrant May Not Challenge Validity of State Conviction

Guiracocha v. Mukasey, No. 07-1715 (3d Cir. Apr. 21, 2008) (not precedential)
Judges Smith, Hardiman, and Cowen

The Third Circuit upheld the decision of Judge Henry S. Dogin and the BIA by ruling that when an immigration judge studies whether a conviction is a crime involving moral turpitude, the immigration judge should not look into the details of the case to let the immigrant attack the validity of the conviction.

Although this case at first seems quite unremarkable, it lays the groundwork for what may be a large debate in the coming years about how much an immigration judge should be allowed to look into the details of a case when analyzing crimes involving moral turpitude. The Third Circuit makes a straightforward holding in this case that the immigration judge should not go into conviction details much. There is a good chance that we will return to this theme in the coming years so keep this holding in mind.


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