Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Baloch (not precedential): Saving Asylum-Seeker From Obvious BIA Errors that Mischaracterized the Record and Ignored Corroboration Test

Baloch v. Mukasey, No. 07-2183 (3d Cir., Aug. 13, 2008) (not precedential)
August 13, 2008
2008 WL 3409455

Judges Sloviter, Stapleton, and Cowen. Per curiam decision.
Overturning the BIA and Immigration Judge Miriam J. Mills

Two enormous errors by the BIA in denying someone's asylum claim.

First, the BIA mischaracterized the record, a fatal error. The BIA concluded that the police had a type of warrant (a First Information Report) when they arrested the person but actually the undisputed evidence was that the police did not have that type of warrant. Clear error by the BIA.

But there was more -- the BIA said the asylum-seeker submitted no newspaper articles about his political activity. Seems they ignored one newspaper article that discussed his political activity. Another clear error.

Second, the BIA blamed the asylum-seeker for not collecting corroborating evidence without going through the steps required before penalizing someone for not having corroborating evidence. The test is Abdulai v. Ashcroft, 239 F.3d 542 (3d Cir. 2001), but it seems the BIA did not follow it. For example, you can't penalize someone until you first find out whether he or she had a good explanation for not getting the corroborating evidence.

For Baloch was Dennis Mulligan of Philadelphia.  For the government was Paul Fiorino of OIL in the Justice Department.


Post a Comment

<< Home