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Immigration Law

Matter of Agustin VALENZUELA GALLARDO, ID 3758, 25 I&N Dec. 838 (BIA 2012)


(1) A crime “relate[s] to obstruction of justice” within the meaning of section 101(a)(43)(S) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(43)(S) (2006), if it includes the critical element of an affirmative and intentional attempt,  motivated by a specific intent, to interfere with the process of justice, irrespective of the existence of an ongoing criminal investigation or proceeding. Matter of Batista-Hernandez, 21 I&N Dec. 955 (BIA 1997), reaffirmed. Matter of Espinoza, 22 I&N Dec. 889 (BIA 1999), clarified.

(2) A conviction for accessory to a felony under section 32 of the California Penal Code that results in a term of imprisonment of at least 1 year is a conviction for an aggravated felony under section 101(a)(43)(S) of the Act, because the offense “relate[s] to obstruction of justice."

- Matter of Valenzuela Gallardo, June 27, 2012.