Over the course of a two week period in February 2014, Associate Attorney Himedes V. Chicas secured the release of three JM clients that were in being detained in the custody Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)—all of whom were at different stages of their removal proceedings.
Post-Hearing and Post-Decision Release under Stay of Removal: The first client, who was subject to the reinstatement of removal after having been ordered removed by an Immigration Judge (“IJ”) 14 years ago, was granted a Stay of Removal request filed on his behalf by Mr. Chicas. ICE’s granting of the stay of removal request will ensure that this client is able to pursue relief in the form of a U nonimmigrant visa.
Pre-Hearing Release under IJ Bond Order: The second client, a long-time permanent resident, was placed into removal proceedings and ICE charged him as being subject to mandatory detention. In a contested bond hearing before the IJ, Mr. Chicas argued that his client was in fact bond eligible and that he should be released pending his final immigration court hearing. Ultimately agreeing with Mr. Chicas, the IJ ordered his client’s release on a reasonable bond amount. Besides being reunited with his family after an almost one month detention, this client will be able to directly assist Mr. Chicas in preparing his defense to removal and applications for relief to the immigration court.
Post-Hearing Release under Order of Supervision while IJ Decision is on Direct Appeal: The third client, also a long-time permanent resident, had been in immigration detention for over 15 months. After many months of intense, multifaceted litigation—including an unsuccessful coram nobis petition to vacate one of his underlying criminal convictions that prompted the initiation of his removal proceedings and the final merits hearing in immigration court where the IJ considered multiple forms of relief—ICE chose to exercise favorable discretion and release Mr. Chicas’ client under an Order of Supervision (“OSUP”), notwithstanding the IJ’s denial of his client’s discretionary application for relief from removal and entry of a removal order against him. Indeed, even though the IJ ordered this client’s removal, the IJ granted his application for deferral of removal under the Convention Against Torture. Mr. Chicas has timely noted an appeal of the portions of the IJ’s unfavorable decision to the Board of Immigration Appeals. Nevertheless, the IJ’s granting of deferral relief was essential in ICE’s decision to release Mr. Chicas’ client on the OSUP. Though the appeal remains pending, Mr. Chicas’ client is elated to be back at home with his wife, young daughter, and other family members.