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Immigration Law

Asylum Victory in Portland (Mexico; PSG)

Amanda Gray writes: "I wanted to share with you a recent IJ decision granting asylum to a woman and her four children* based on her membership in the particular social group of “Mexican women unable to leave their domestic relationship.”  DHS made the argument that Respondent did not establish that her membership in the particular social group was “at least one central reason” for the persecution she suffered because the father of her children did not abuse her for the first 10 years of their relationship, he only abused her thereafter when he was drunk or high, and furthermore, because when asked why he abused her, she said it was because he drank and did drugs.  The IJ’s response is on page 8:

“DHS’ arguments are misplaced.  First, that there was period of time where [he] was not abusive does not mitigate or minimize the abuse that Respondent did suffer, nor does it take Respondent out of the particular social group.  Second, the fact that [he] only harmed Respondent when he was drunk is not relevant.  There is no indication that [he] suffers from any mental illness such that he was not aware of his actions when he voluntarily chose to drink or do drugs and beat and rape Respondent.  The fact that he was drunk or high does not justify the abuse.  Finally, the Court does not require Respondent to be able to articulate the nuance behind why [he] abused her.  Rather, [his] prolonged and serious physical and emotional abuse and his patronizing and sexist statements to Respondent, considered in the context of the country conditions evidence, shows that the persecution she suffered was on account of her membership in the group “Mexican woman who are unable to leave their domestic relationship.”

* Although the couple had 4 kids together and had been together for many years, they were not officially married.