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Immigration Daily April 25, 2003
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Editor's Comments

Ashcroft Says Mass Migration Is National Security Threat

In a stunning administrative decision (In re D-J-, 23 I&N Dec. 572 (AG 2003) (Apr. 17, 2003)), Attorney General Ashcroft ordered the detention without bond of Haitian asylum seekers. In his administrative decision, he alleges that national security concerns underlie his decision: "The INS submissions also outline [a] national security implication of encouraging future mass migrations by sea from Haiti. The Coast Guard declaration asserts that continued mass migrations from Haiti have 'heavily taxed Coast Guard capacity and capabilities,' while 'reducing responsiveness in other mission areas.' ... The Department of Defense, which is also involved in efforts to contain such overseas migrations, also asserts that the demands of mass migrations from Haiti 'would create a drain on scarce assets that are being used in or supporting operations elsewhere.' " This can be interpreted as a strong basis for having a channel for large-scale legal migration from Haiti, instead of wasting scarce Defense Dept resources chasing potential dish-washers and gardeners. National Security is endangered only by *illegal* mass migration, a direct result of the lack of available legal avenues. *Legal* mass migration is not a national security threat, yet the Attorney General's Decision implies that it is: "The first area of a national security concern advanced by INS is the threat of further mass migration." This is an anti-immigration agenda hiding behind the figleaf of national security.

The decision also says "the State Department declaration asserts that it has 'noticed an increase in third country nations (Pakistanis, Palestinians, etc.) using Haiti as a staging point for attempted migration to the United States. This increases the national security interest in curbing use of this migration route.'" We agree entirely that such third country stagings raise national security issues. This points out once again the need to have legal channels of mass migration, where the migrants can and should be thoroughly vetted for national security concerns. It is the lack of such legal channels that make third country stagings happen.

So, what's next? We believe that this decision sets the stage for three consequences, whether intended or otherwise. Firstly, this decision is likely a precursor to a similar decision for Mexican nationals. The argument, mutatis mutandis, will be much the same. Secondly, since the Attorney General wants to detain hundreds of gardeners in the fear that their could be one Al-Qaeda operative in their midst, in other words, detain the chaff with the wheat, our detention centers will soon be bulging with an awful lot of dish-washers and gardeners. It is a fantasy to believe that detention will change the fundamentals of why people seek to migrate hither. Thirdly, this decision will put additional pressure on Congress to open up legal channels of immigration. The very next economic upturn will see strong pressure by American employers on Congress for a reliable and legal method for employing immigrants. This decision gives solid, national security grounds for Congress to make large-scale legal immigration possible.


ILW.COM Focus

INA And INS Regulations At Your Fingertips

While writing to the INS about a RFE or preparing a petition, how do you keep the INA and all the relevent regulations of the INS at your fingertips? Attorneys have been using the exaustive topic indices in the 8 CFR Plus and The Whole ACT - INA (Annotated) to do just that for years. To read more, please click here.


Featured Article

Deportation: Fraud Waiver Granted to Permanent Resident
Carl Shusterman writes "Yet, strict as they are, the immigration laws allow for waivers to be granted to some persons who obtained permanent residence through fraud or misrepresentation."


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Immigration Law News

DOS Seeks Educational Grants
The Department of State sought requests for grant proposals for the following educational programs: Tibet Development, Professional, Educational and Cultural Exchange Projects, English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Institutes for Teachers and Administrators From Jordan and Morocco, and International Sports Programming Initiative. All programs must comply with J-1 Visa regulations.

Attorney General Ashcroft Orders Haitian Asylee Be Denied Bond And Detained
In re D-J-, 23 I&N Dec. 572 (AG 2003) (Apr. 17, 2003), the Attorney General (AG) said that the "release of Respondent on bond was and is unwarranted due to consideration of sound immigration policy and national security that would be undercut by the release of Respondent and other undocumented alien migrants who unlawfully crossed the borders of the US on October 29, 2002."

EOIR Suspends 4 Attorneys, Reinstates 1 Attorney In Latest Disciplinary Proceedings
The Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) announced in a news release that it has taken disciplinary action against five attorneys after charging them with violations of the rules of professional conduct for immigration practitioners.

Communications In Aid Of Conspiracy To Distribute Cocaine Are A Drug-Trafficking Offense
In US v. Duarte, No. 02-1066 (2nd Cir. Apr. 24, 2003), the court said that it disagreed with Defendant's argument that his prior conviction under 21 USC 843(b) for communications he made in the aid of a conspiracy to distribute cocaine was not a "drug-trafficking offense" within the meaning of 2L1.2 of the Sentencing Guidelines.

State Drug Conviction And Federal Illegal Reentry Conviction Are Unrelated For Criminal History Purposes Under USSG 4A1.2(a)(2)
In US v. Hi-Locortois, No. 02-3580 (8th Cir. Apr. 24, 2003), the court said that "The district court did not err in considering the sentences to be unrelated, and thus counting them separately in computing Defendant's criminal history. There was no formal order of consolidation, and the proceedings occurred in different courts having separate jurisdictions."

Alien Must Raise Central Arguments In Appeal To Satisfy §1326(d)
In US v. Gonzalez-Roque, No. 01-1509 (2nd Cir. Aug. 15, 2002), the court said that the exhaustion requirement that applies in immigration proceedings requires the Petitioner to raise the argument central in his appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), and that the BIA "is not obligated to search [the record] for possibly meritorious appellate issues."

Attorney General Ashcroft Says Illegal Immigrants Can Be Held Indefinitely
New York Newsday reports "Illegal immigrants could be held indefinitely without bond if their cases present national security concerns, under a decision by Attorney General John Ashcroft."

Mexico Hopes To Revive Immigration Proposal That Was Quietly Abandoned After 9/11 Terrorist Attacks
The San Diego Union-Tribune reports "Mexico renewed its call for the United States to grant amnesty to some 4 million undocumented Mexicans inside U.S. territory, this time arguing that U.S. security is at stake."

Federal Prosecutors Drop All Charges Against A Man Convicted Of Immigrant Smuggling As A Result Of Dissenting Opinion
The Los Angeles Times reports "...Thanks to a dissenting opinion by one appeals court judge that was so persuasive, federal prosecutors decided to drop all charges and set Ramirez free after serving three years."


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An Important disclaimer! The information provided on this page is not legal advice. Transmission of this information is not intended to create, and receipt by you does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Readers must not act upon any information without first seeking advice from a qualified attorney. Send Correspondence and articles to editor@ilw.com. Letters and articles may be edited and may be published and otherwise used in any medium. Opinions expressed in letters and articles do not necessarily reflect the opinion of ILW.COM.

Editorial Advisory Board
Marc Ellis, Gary Endelman

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