Sunday, December 23, 2007

Supreme Court News: Ali v. Achim Voluntarily Dismissed

Lawyers for a man who came to the U.S. eight years ago as a refugee from Somalia notified the Supreme Court on Friday that his case, granted review by the Court on Sept. 25, has been settled, and will now be voluntarily dismissed. The case is Ali v. Achim, et al. (06-1346).

Ahmed Ali fled ethnic strife in Somalia, coming to the United States with his family in 1999.  Two years later, he was involved in a fight during which he injured another man. He pleaded no contest to a felony charge of substantial battery with a dangerous weapon and was sentenced to an 11-month prison term as well as seven years of probation. When he was released, immigration authorities began deportation proceedings.

The immigration court ruled that the man could stay in the U.S. because he faced retribution if he returned to Somalia, but refused to offer additional forms of protection because it deemed his felony “particularly serious.” The man appealed, arguing that his crime cannot be considered “particularly serious” because it was not an "aggravated felony" under the immigration laws. The Seventh Circuit denied most of the relief sought by Ali.  See Ali v. Achim,  468 F.3d 462 (7th Cir. 2007).


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