Deportation Prevented, Green Card GrantedPublished: Feb 25, 2008 By: Matthew L. Kolken Source: My Source
We just successfully defended our client who faced deportation before the Immigration Court in Buffalo, New York. Our client narrowly escaped persecution in his native country Ghana. Back in the early 1990’s he was an election official who refused to take bribe money to stuff the ballot box at his precinct, and then spoke to the media about the incident. Our client was taken into custody and was brutally tortured for just under a month before he was able to escape from a truck that was taking him to a remote location to be executed.
Our client’s uncle purchased a fraudulent passport that was used to gain admission to the United States. Less than one week after admission our client applied for asylum as a result of his fears of returning to Ghana.
Approximately one year after he applied for asylum he met his future wife, a United States citizen. The couple fell in love, married, and filed the requisite Green Card petition along with a request for a waiver to cure the fraud that our client committed to get to the United States to save his life. The couple then had a United States citizen child who suffers from asthma. Our client’s spouse also suffers from a severe gastrointestinal condition that limits her ability to work and is undergoing treatment.
At the Green Card interview the Government did not question the validity of our client’s marriage, but denied the waiver request because they did not believe that there was sufficient proof of hardship to our client’s United States citizen spouse. We were then retained after the government started the deportation process.
At trial we submitted proof of our client’s persecution in his home country, as well as proof of the hardship to both his spouse and child. Our client is educated, employed, is a home owner, tax payer, and supports not only his child but his wife’s adult child from a previous marriage who suffers from mental retardation. He isactive in his Church, and in the community. He has no criminal convictions anywhere in the world, and is a person of exemplary character.
After a contested hearing, the Immigration Judge granted our request for cancellation of removal, despite denying our client’s application for asylum, and adjustment of status. The effect of the Judge’s ruling is that after over 15 years of waiting our client now has a Green Card and may live safely in the United States. He will be eligible to apply for his citizenship in three years. The government did not appeal the Judge’s decision.