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Asylum Victory in Arlington: El Salvador, MS-13, Social Group

Attorney Jean C. Han writes: "Attached please find a redacted opinion by Judge Schmidt in Arlington in a gang-related asylum case from June 12, 2012. He found that my client would more likely than not be persecuted on account of MS-13 if she were to return to El Salvador and granted asylum and withholding...

IJ Asylum Victory; El Salvador; Resistance to MS-13

"The Court finds that the government of El Salvador is unable to control the MS-13. ... The Court finds that in light of the small size of El Salvador, the strength of the MS-13, and the fact that Respondent's religious proselytizing in El Salvador is likely to be highly visible to gang members...

CA4 on Social Group, Former (MS-13) Gang Membership: Martinez v. Holder

"[W]e conclude that the BIA erred as a matter of law in its interpretation of the phrase “particular social group” by holding that former gang membership is not an immutable characteristic of a particular social group for purposes of § 1231(b)(3)." - Martinez v. Holder, Jan...

CA4 on Asylum, El Salvador, MS-13, Mara 18: Aquino Cordova v. Holder

"Aquino offered evidence that MS-13 subsequently killed his cousin, Vidal, and had previously killed his uncle, both of whom were members of Mara 18. We cannot agree with the Government’s characterization of this evidence as describing nothing more than the “general conditions of upheaval...

CA9 on Jurisdiction ("A Trap for the Unwary") - Martinez v. Sessions

Martinez v. Sessions, July 20, 2017 - "In this case, a removed alien challenges a reinstated removal order by claiming that he has a reasonable fear of being persecuted in his home country of El Salvador. An asylum officer interviewed the alien and issued a negative reasonable fear determination...

CA4 on Persecution, MS-13, El Salvador: Zavaleta Policiano v. Sessions

Zavaleta Policiano v. Sessions - "[T]he IJ and BIA failed to appreciate, or even address, critical evidence in the record. ... we conclude that the BIA erred by affirming the IJ’s clearly erroneous finding. Zavaleta Policiano was not required to prove that the gang’s threats were “exclusively”...