Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Holly Cooper and the students of the UC Davis Immigration Law Clinic won a nice victory in the Ninth Circuit in Flores-Torres v. Mukasey, Nov. 10, 2008. The case involved a claim to citizenship, judicial review, and detention:
"Torres asserts that his detention is unlawful because he is a citizen – that he automatically derived citizenship from his mother under the former 8 U.S.C. § 1432 when he was seventeen because he was born out of wedlock and was not legitimated by his father. His claim is non-frivolous on its face. The government’s authority to detain Torres appears to depend on the question of whether he was legitimated by his father under El Salvadoran law. The district court is the appropriate forum to resolve such a claim. We hold that Torres does not have to wait until his removal proceedings are completed and a final removal order is issued before he can secure habeas review of his citizenship claim and of his contention that he may not be detained under the INA. For the reasons stated above, the district court has jurisdiction over Torres’s habeas petition challenging his detention. We therefore remand to the district court to hear the merits of his habeas petition."