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Immigration Law

CA9 on Due Process: Flores-Rodriguez v. Garland

Flores-Rodriguez v. Garland

"The IJ’s failure to put Flores-Rodriguez on notice of this central issue in his case denied him “a full and fair hearing” by preventing him from submitting significant testimony and other evidence. Colmenar, 210 F.3d at 971. Because the IJ’s conduct potentially affected the outcome of the proceedings, Flores-Rodriguez has also suffered prejudice. Id. For these reasons, a due process violation warranting reversal has occurred. We express no opinion whether, if Flores-Rodriguez had received notice and defended against the claim that he had made false claims of citizenship, he would have likely prevailed or to the contrary been held inadmissible. But what is of signal importance in our system of justice is that when a person is charged with a crime or charged with allegations warranting removal from the country, that person is fairly entitled to notice of the claims against him and an opportunity to be heard in opposition. Because that opportunity was not given here, we grant the petition and remand to the BIA with instructions that it hold whatever future proceedings are necessary to ensure due process is given to Flores-Rodriguez before decision is made. PETITION FOR REVIEW GRANTED."

[Hats off to Karen S. Monrreal!]