Our Pro Bono Commitment

Our Pro Bono Commitment

May 19, 2022 Jenner & Block Pro Bono Team Honored by Housing Forward

A team led by Jenner & Block Partner Michelle M. McAtee will receive Housing Forward’s Corporate Partner Award at its 24th Annual Have a Heart Gala for their longstanding pro bono support of the organization. Housing Forward serves the needs of those in a housing crisis in Cook County, Illinois, helping them out of homelessness and into housing stability.

Our lawyers handle Housing Forward’s real estate, tax, corporate and other legal needs as they arise, thereby expanding the range of services offered by Housing Forward.

The gala will take place on May 21. Learn more here.

 

CATEGORIES: Awards and Recognition

PEOPLE: Michelle M. McAtee

May 12, 2022 Jenner & Block and Cboe Help Eight People Secure DACA Renewals

Starting in February, lawyers from Jenner & Block and our client Cboe worked together to host a series of clinics aimed at helping individuals renew their status under the federal Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Within two months of the clinics, eight people received their renewals from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.

The Jenner & Block lawyers who participated in the clinics include Partners Gregory M. Boyle, Reid J. Schar, Coral A. Negron, Rachel K. Alpert, Michelle M. McAtee, Peter H. Rosenbaum, and Sheila C. Kailus, and Associates Molly J. Piazzi, JX Quek, and Emily A. Merrifield.

CATEGORIES: DACA, Immigration, Pro Bono

PEOPLE: Gregory M. Boyle, Michelle M. McAtee, Peter H. Rosenbaum, Coral A. Negron, Reid J. Schar, Jing Xun Quek, Molly J. Piazzi, Sheila C. Kailus, Emily A. Merrifield, Rachel K. Alpert

April 27, 2022 Children in Custody at South Carolina Juvenile Justice Centers Held in Nightmarish Conditions, New Lawsuit Alleges

A lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the District of South Carolina alleges horrific living conditions for the more than 250 children detained by the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice, the agency tasked by law with providing South Carolina’s detained children with care and rehabilitation rather than punishment.

Children held in DJJ facilities are routinely subjected to violence, months-long isolation in solitary confinement, and a lack of meaningful educational or mental health services, according to the lawsuit, which was brought on behalf of the South Carolina State Conference of the NAACP, Disability Rights South Carolina, and Justice 360.

“These children are in danger every day and every night, and DJJ has consistently failed to contain the violence,” said Lindsey Vann, Executive Director of Justice 360. “These are systemic problems that need appropriate resources, authority, and support to enact real change.” 

According to the lawsuit, there is sewage water in the cells, feces on the walls, and cockroaches in the food of the facilities. The lawsuit alleges that youth-on-youth violence is rampant, with staff often turning a blind eye or even instigating assaults on children. The lawsuit further alleges that DJJ has resorted to 23-hour-a-day solitary confinement as a default management tool to house sick kids, “protect” children from violence, or address even the most minor of infractions. 

“South Carolina exposes the children in its juvenile justice system—most of whom are Black—to barbaric conditions,” said Brenda Murphy, President of the NAACP South Carolina State Conference of Branches. “Children in custody suffer from constant violence, are isolated for weeks and months, and are denied the basic rehabilitative services they need and are entitled to. Our most vulnerable children must receive support, not punishment.” 

Despite claims that it operates its own accredited school district, helps youth pursue workforce development opportunities, and provides rehabilitative services, most children receive no educational services, according to the lawsuit. The lack of educational resources at DJJ facilities is especially damaging for the children who suffer from learning impairments or physical disabilities, as no special education services are provided, the lawsuit says. One child, who struggles with verbal communication, reported receiving only a single day of education over a period of nine months.

“DJJ holds some of our State’s most traumatized and vulnerable children,” said Allen Chaney, Legal Director for the ACLU of South Carolina. “If conditions don’t immediately and dramatically improve, then the only adequate remedy will be to release children from these horrific conditions.”

The DJJ has a well-documented track record — dating back to the 1960s — of violating the constitutional and statutory rights of the children in its care. Even with decades’ worth of findings and interventions, DJJ has failed to make substantial progress in implementing lasting solutions, the lawsuit says. 

“DJJ has been aware of the ongoing violence and unconstitutional conditions at their facilities for years, and yet they still fail to protect the children entrusted to their care,” said Jenner & Block Partner Previn Warren. “Our hope is to create lasting and meaningful reform right away to end the trauma these children are experiencing.”

The lawsuit, filed jointly with the ACLU of South Carolina, the NAACP, and the law firms Wyche and Jenner & Block, asks the court to declare that the department is violating the constitutional rights of South Carolina children and seeks judicial intervention to facilitate immediate remedies such as clean water, dry beds, healthy food, safety from violence, freedom from unconstitutional uses of solitary confinement, meaningful access to education and mental health resources, and accommodations for children with disabilities.

Mr. Warren and Partner Jeremy M. Creelan led this effort and received support from Associates William R. Weaver, Mary E. Marshall, Jessica J. Sawadogo, Jacob D. Alderdice, Jeremy H. Ershow, and Amit B. Patel, and Paralegal Adam H. Weidman

CATEGORIES: children, Litigation, Pro Bono

PEOPLE: Previn Warren, Jeremy M. Creelan, Jacob D. Alderdice, Jeremy H. Ershow, Amit B. Patel, William R. Weaver (Will), Mary E. Marshall, Jessica J.W. Sawadogo

April 20, 2022 Partner Andrew Vail Featured in United Way Article Celebrating Volunteering

Jenner & Block Partner Andrew W. Vail, who is the first general counsel of the United Way of Metro Chicago, discusses the importance of volunteering in a United Way article titled “Volunteering: A Labor of the Soul.” The article describes Mr. Vail as a “fierce advocate” for public service and sharing his skills in law. It notes that he is the immediate past chair of the firm’s pro bono program who spearheaded our five-year $250 million commitment to pro bono service. “The need in our community is so great, and volunteering can mean so much, including to those who engage. There is no time better than now to volunteer,” Mr. Vail says.

CATEGORIES: Pro Bono

PEOPLE: Andrew W. Vail

March 24, 2022 Defending Transgender Youth Rights with Lambda Legal and the ACLU

Jenner & Block filed an amicus brief in Travis County, Texas in Doe v. Abbott on behalf of Professor Ron Beal, a Texas administrative law expert, in support of the plaintiffs’ application for a temporary injunction and as part of our pro bono work with Lambda Legal and the ACLU to defend transgender youth rights.

In the brief, the plaintiffs challenged the decision of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to follow the directive of Governor Abbott to investigate gender-affirming care for transgender minors as “child abuse” under the Texas Family Code pursuant to a non-binding opinion issued by Attorney General Paxton.

Professor Beal argued that the DFPS decision to enforce the Attorney General’s novel interpretation of the Texas Family Code in conducting abuse and neglect investigations exceeded the agency’s statutory authority. The Texas Legislature previously considered and declined to amend the definition of “child abuse” under the Family Code to include medical procedures identified in the Attorney General’s opinion, and neither DFPS nor its commissioner had the authority to expand the definition of “child abuse” under Texas law. The brief also explained that, even if DFPS and its commissioner had the authority to enforce an expanded definition of “child abuse,” that the action constituted an interpretive rule, which failed to comply with the mandatory notice, comment, and justification procedures under the Texas Administrative Procedures Act.

Special Counsel Benjamin T. Halbig and Associate Reanne Zheng took the lead in authoring the brief, supervised by Partner Clifford W. Berlow. Partners Adam G. Unikowsky, Mark Davis, and Laurie Edelstein; Associates Steven Tinetti and Chasel Lee; Pro Bono Counsel Nura Maznavi; and Junior Paralegal Grace Liberman assisted.
 

CATEGORIES: Amicus Brief

PEOPLE: Adam G. Unikowsky, Benjamin T. Halbig (Ben), Clifford W. Berlow, Reanne Zheng, Steven Tinetti, Mark Davis, Laurie Edelstein, Chasel Lee

March 11, 2022 Guantánamo Detainee Majid Khan Closer to Freedom with Approval of Final Sentence

On March 11, the Convening Authority for the Military Commissions ordered a sentence of 10 years for Jenner & Block client Majid Khan. Applying credit for time served from the date of his guilty plea on February 29, 2012, Mr. Khan's sentence ended on March 1, 2022. 

For more than a decade, Co-Managing Partner Katya Jestin has worked with the Center for Constitutional Rights and the Military Commissions Defense Organization to represent Mr. Khan pro bono.

“This is a historic day. Majid has fulfilled his cooperation obligations completely, and his sentence has been served. He must now be released from detention,” Ms. Jestin said in a statement. “Majid’s torture at the hands of the CIA in the name of national security was illegal and a shameful episode in our nation’s history.”

Mr. Khan abandoned involvement with terrorism more than a decade ago and has been providing substantial cooperation to US authorities since then. In response to the Convening Authority’s decision, Mr. Khan’s legal team, including Ms. Jestin, called for his transfer from Guantánamo “without delay.”

“We look forward to working with the Biden administration to ensure that Mr. Khan is promptly and safely resettled in a third country where he can be reunited with his wife and daughter and begin the next chapter of his life,” the team said in a statement

CATEGORIES: Guantanamo, Guantanamo Bay, Pro Bono

PEOPLE: Katya Jestin

February 18, 2022 Pro Bono Client Releases National Report Card on Mental Health Services for Children

For three weeks in December, a team of 26 Jenner & Block lawyers researched the availability of and access to mental health services for children in grades K-12 in 45 different states. Client Inseparable and 16 other organizations joined to form the Hopeful Futures Campaign, which used the data to assess the accessibility of mental health services in all 50 states.

On February 16, 2022, Inseparable released the first national report card that scores every state on policies that support school mental health services, with recommendations for how to improve. The report card was reported by news outlets including MindSightNews, NPR, and USA Today.

The team included Partners Carissa Coze, Alexander M. Smith, and Joseph J. Torres; Special Counsel Danny S. Chami and Emily M. Savner; Associates Karolina L. Bartosik, Sophia L. Cai, Jenna L. Conwisar, Edward Crouse, Allison N. Douglis, Kate E. Fintel, Kevin J. Kennedy, Mary E. Marshall, Lawrence W. McMahon, Eric E. Petry, Annie K. Schoenfeldt, Madeline Skitzki, Tyler G. Westrich, William A. Williams, and Eric W. Wolff; Discovery Attorneys Chuck Downs and Matt Par; and Law Clerks Deanna Krokos, Areeb Salim, Jessica Sawadogo, and Jonathan Steinberg. Legal Assistant Elizabeth Visick assisted, and Partner Gail H. Morse led the project. 

CATEGORIES: Pro Bono

PEOPLE: Gail H. Morse, P.C., Carissa Coze, Alexander M. Smith, Danny S. Chami, William A. Williams (Bill), Joseph J. Torres, Emily M. Savner, Allison N. Douglis, Madeline Skitzki, Eric E. Petry, Lawrence W. McMahon, Tyler G. Westrich, Karolina L. Bartosik, Kevin J. Kennedy, Annie K. Schoenfeldt, Kate E. Fintel, Sophia L. Cai, Jenna L. Conwisar, Eric W. Wolff, Mary E. Marshall, Edward Crouse

February 18, 2022 Illinois Prison Rife with Vermin, Mold, Sewage, Class-Action Lawsuit Alleges

A class action lawsuit filed in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois reveals the egregious living conditions for approximately 1,000 prisoners at the Northern Reception Center in Crest Hill, the point of entry for most prisoners into the Illinois Department of Corrections prison system.

Hundreds of prisoners reported appalling conditions at the prison, including infestations of rats, mice, flies, and cockroaches; plumbing that frequently spills raw sewage into cells, communal showers, and even the kitchen; and under-cooked, spoiled, and insufficient amounts of food. Additionally, drinking water is brown, often smells like sewage, and Illinois Environmental Protection Agency (IEPA) testing reveals it has over eight times the maximum contaminant level (MCL) for lead. Prisoners have not received any yard time since November, 2021, meaning they essentially spend all hours of the day, every day, in their squalid cells.

Prisoners are held at the Northern Reception Center in these terrible conditions for months before being transferred elsewhere in Illinois’ prison system.

“Entering prison is always going to be a shock,” said Alan Mills, Executive Director of the Uptown People’s Law Center (UPLC), “but forcing people to endure infestation by vermin, undrinkable water, and extended solitary confinement when they first enter Illinois’ prison system is unacceptable and serves no legitimate purpose.”

The lawsuit, filed jointly by UPLC and Jenner & Block on behalf of the prisoners, asks the court to declare that the Illinois Department of Corrections is violating the prisoners’ constitutionally protected rights and require action to improve conditions in the prison.

“Prison officials have known how bad the conditions are for years but they’ve chosen to ignore the situation and shuffle prisoners along in the penal system,” said Jenner & Block Partner Benjamin J. Bradford. “We want to shine a light on the inhumane conditions at the Northern Reception Center; it’s time to amplify prisoners’ voices and force change at this facility.” Mr. Bradford led the Jenner & Block team along with Partners Terri L. Mascherin and Associates Lindsey A. Lusk and Garrett J. Salzman. Other team members include Alexander E. Cottingham, Emily A. Merrifield, Steven Tinetti, Arianne R. Wilt, and Vincent Wu.

The Uptown People’s Law Center and Jenner & Block are working in partnership on this case as part of Jenner & Block’s five-year pro bono commitment (2021-2025) to provide $250 million in free legal services to those in need of access to justice.

PEOPLE: Terri L. Mascherin, Benjamin J. Bradford (Ben), Lindsey A. Lusk, Garrett J. Salzman, Steven Tinetti, Alexander Edward Cottingham, Emily A. Merrifield, Vincent Wu, Arianne R. Wilt (Annie)

February 16, 2022 Access-A-Ride Paratransit Users Sue the New York MTA for Equal Fare Discounts

Jenner & Block is helping five individuals with disabilities who use New York City paratransit services file a class action lawsuit to end discrimination that excludes them from transit fare discounts.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the New York City Transit Authority (together, the MTA) offer substantial fare discounts, including half fares for people with disabilities and seniors, as well as 30-day and seven-day unlimited fares, for bus and subway riders, but not for users of the Access-A-Ride paratransit system, whose disabilities prevent them from riding buses and subways.

The lawsuit, filed on February 15, 2022, in New York Supreme Court seeks to compel the MTA to offer the same discounts to Access-A-Ride users as are available to subway and bus riders. The case also seeks to reimburse AAR riders for the financial harm they suffered due to the unavailability of these fare discounts.

“It’s not fair that the MTA offers these discounts to subway and bus riders and not to Access-A-Ride users. We rely on the MTA to get us around just the same as other mass transit riders, and we shouldn’t be paying more,” said plaintiff Sheila Murray. “The MTA needs to end this discrimination against Access-A-Ride users immediately.”

Access-A-Ride is the MTA’s paratransit service for people with disabilities who cannot use, or are substantially limited in their ability to use, subways or buses. The MTA is legally required to provide this public transit service, which must be comparable to what is available to subway and bus riders. But AAR has long been plagued by unreliable and inflexible service. Nevertheless, AAR riders must pay the full fare of $2.75 for every trip, no matter how many trips they take per month and no matter whether they would qualify for a reduced fare because of their disability or age.

Jenner & Block Partner Marc B. Hankin, Associates Corey E. Schoellkopf and Anna M. Windemuth, and Staff Attorney Ehsan M. Khah represent the plaintiffs as pro bono counsel, along with New York Lawyers for the Public Interest and Mobilization for Justice.

“We are delighted to work closely with the top-notch and committed lawyers at NYLPI’s Disability Justice Program and Mobilization for Justice’s Disability and Aging Rights Program to help vindicate the legal rights of New Yorkers with disabilities,” Mr. Hankin said.

For access to the complaint, click here. Read New York Lawyers for the Public Interest’s press release here.

CATEGORIES: Litigation

PEOPLE: Marc B. Hankin, Ehsan M. Khah, Anna Windemuth, Corey E. Schoellkopf

February 16, 2022 Jenner & Block Publishes Annual Report on Pro Bono Service

For more than 20 years, Jenner & Block has been proud to publish an annual report on pro bono service. The Heart of the Matter highlights the work we have done and the pro bono clients we have been privileged to serve in the past year. This report reaffirms that our pro bono work – whether it is advocating for those caught up in the criminal justice system, counseling nonprofits, or supporting those seeking a way out of high-risk areas – can change lives. This year, we also celebrate the dedicated lawyers from our commercial clients who partnered with us on our mission to help those in need.

CATEGORIES: Pro Bono

February 9, 2022 Appeal Successfully Reversed for Kosovan Refugee

Jenner & Block represented a man who had entered the United States from Kosovo as a refugee when he was very young, with no memory of living there; nor does he speak the language. Unfortunately, our client later developed a substance abuse problem and was arrested for some minor crimes, including a drug charge – which is a removable offense – that made him inadmissible for legal permanent residence.

At his hearing before the Immigration Judge (IJ), our client sought a waiver of inadmissibility on humanitarian grounds and petitioned for an adjustment of status to legal permanent resident. He arranged to have family members testify about his importance to them and also prepared to introduce evidence about the poor conditions in Kosovo.

After our client’s own testimony and cross-examination, however, the IJ said that he did not need to hear anything else and was prepared to rule. The IJ then asked the U.S. government whether it had anything else to say, and the government lawyer said no. The IJ granted our client a waiver and adjustment of status; the government appealed the decision.

On appeal, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) held that our client’s negative equities outweighed the positive and reversed the waiver. At that point Jenner & Block became involved, on referral from the National Immigrant Justice Center, and the firm appealed to the Seventh Circuit.

In cases such as this, the BIA has unreviewable discretion to reweigh positive and negative equities. No deference is owed to the IJ. Thus, the firm team had to argue that the BIA had committed a legal error not just that it mis-weighed the evidence.

Jenner & Block Associate Illyana A. Green provided critical advocacy, ultimately arguing that our client had been whipsawed by the government, which had not filed a prehearing statement, and although it vigorously cross-examined our client about his criminal record, the government had made no argument at the hearing. Ms. Green argued that the government had preserved no issue for appeal, and our client was prejudiced because of the unusual posture of the case before the IJ: Had the government made any argument at the hearing, our client could have insisted on presenting his evidence to make a full record. The court agreed with the argument and reversed the BIA’s decision.

Although the court attempted to write the decision narrowly, it may have a significant impact on how immigration hearings are conducted. The government rarely files pre-hearing statements due to the volume of immigration cases on their docket. To protect its ability to appeal, the government will be forced by this decision to spend more time getting ready for hearings.

In the meantime, our client was deported to Kosovo, where he has faced homelessness and other challenges. We are hopeful that this positive decision will enable our client to return to the United States. The government will need to bring him back, and on remand, it will be difficult for the government to maintain an appeal, given the Seventh Circuit’s holding.

Others on the firm team for this matter included Partner Matthew E. Price who supervised Ms. Green, with support from paralegal Mary Frances Patston. 

CATEGORIES: Appellate, Asylum, Pro Bono

PEOPLE: Matthew E. Price, Illyana A. Green

January 31, 2022 Asylum Granted for Nicaraguan Mother and Daughter

A Jenner & Block team secured a life-saving result in a pro bono asylum case before the Chicago Immigration Court. The team included Partner Thomas S. O’Neill; Associates Jonathan A. Enfield and Brian B. Druchniak; Staff Attorney Edmundo Cuevas; Paralegals Charlotte M. Stretch and Sharlean T. Perez; and GCM Grosvenor’s Managing Director Girish Kashyap as co-counsel. The clients were a Nicaraguan political activist and local opposition party official and her 14-year-old daughter. In retaliation for our adult client’s leadership within her community in support of a national movement protesting the authoritarian regime of President Daniel Ortega, she and her family were subject to a series of escalating threats by police and other government agents.

Those threats culminated with a group of heavily armed parapolice coming to our clients’ home with warrants for the arrest of our adult client and her husband. She escaped detention – and the near certainty of violent abuse, torture, death, or disappearance – only because one member of the parapolice took pity on her other infant daughter, who was home alone with our adult client.

Despite that miraculous reprieve, our adult client knew that arrest would follow and inevitably lead to torment, possibly death. Our clients and their family decided to go into hiding elsewhere in Nicaragua. But when the government continued to hunt them, it became clear that hiding would not work, and they had no choice but to flee to the United States. Our clients went first, followed by other family members. Because the journey to the United States was so dangerous, our adult client had to make the heart-rending decision to leave her infant daughter with family in Nicaragua. 

The team obtained affidavits from several witnesses after conducting multiple interviews with each, including the client’s former neighbor who is currently in hiding after surviving a brutal machete attack from a pro-government paramilitary fighter. Mr. Enfield was the primary point of client contact, and Mr. Cuevas and Ms. Stretch provided invaluable help as interpreters and translators.

With support from Mr. Enfield, Mr. Druchniak prepared a well-written and comprehensive legal brief that earned praise from the judge and the government attorney. Ms. Perez offered crucial last-minute assistance, putting in long nights to get the brief’s copious exhibits organized and annotated.

The team overcame tremendous obstacles when, two days before the hearing, the court announced that the hearing would be remote rather than in-person. To make matters more complicated, both clients and another key witness fell seriously ill just before the filing deadline.

Despite these obstacles, Mr. Druchniak delivered a compelling direct examination of our adult client – so much so that, during a recess, the government attorney volunteered that the client was clearly credible. The judge agreed, granting both clients asylum, with the government waiving appeal.

CATEGORIES: Asylum

PEOPLE: Jonathan A. Enfield, Brian B. Druchniak, Thomas S. O'Neill

January 11, 2022 Jenner & Block Team Recognized for Pro Bono Service by Eastern District of California

The United States District Court for the Eastern District of California recently recognized Partner Kirsten Hicks Spira and Special Counsel Wesley M. Griffith as honorees for their commitment to pro bono during the District’s annual “Night to Honor Service.” 

Spira and Griffith were recognized for leading a team that included Associates Elizabeth Avunjian, and Effiong K. Dampha in a Section 1983 civil rights case.  The case arose from our client reporting several prison guards for misconduct.  In retaliation, the guards took our client to an isolated area of the prison that was closed for construction and beat him until he lost consciousness. The guards denied all wrong doing, claiming that the client had instead slipped and fell to the ground during escort. 

The client, who had limited education and financial means, was originally proceeding without counsel and having difficulty making his case in the face of the guards’ denial of any wrongdoing. The firm team, however, was able to secure evidence from the prison confirming that our client was taken to an outside hospital by ambulance for treatment for his injuries shortly after the attack, that the area where the attack occurred had no security cameras or other safeguards to prevent abuse of prisoners by staff, and that the guards involved had coordinated their incident reports before officially filing them.  Based on this evidence, the action was settled on the eve of trial on favorable terms for our client.

The Eastern District has one of the highest levels of pro se civil rights litigants in the country, and Jenner & Block lawyers have served on the District’s Civil Rights Pro Bono Panel for many years.

Associates Vivian L. BickfordKristen Green, and Julia K. Hirata and Paralegal Christal Oropeza also supported the matter. 

CATEGORIES: Awards, Litigation, Section 1983

PEOPLE: Kirsten Hicks Spira, Effiong K. Dampha, Vivian L. Bickford, Kristen Green, Elizabeth Avunjian

December 8, 2021 Jenner & Block Receives 2021 Impact in the Courts Award from National Immigration Project of the National Guild

On December 8, Jenner & Block will receive the 2021 Impact in the Courts Award from the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild (NIP) during its 50th anniversary event. The firm will be recognized for collaborative efforts on the Irwin Detention Center project, during which a firm team is co-counseling with NIP and a number of law school clinics and others in litigation against US Immigration and Customs Enforcement and other defendants for forced medical procedures on women detained there.

Partners Debbie L. Berman and Gabrielle Sigel and Associate Miriam J. Wayne continue to lead the effort. Others who have worked on the cross-office, multi-practice team include Partners Robert C. Harmala and Howard S. Suskin, Special Counsel Aaron R. Cooper, Associates Illyana A. Green, Michael R. Greubel, Matthew G. Lawson, Daniel S. McCord, Andrew J. Plague, Laurel A. Raymond, Corinne M. Smith, and Reanne Zheng, and Pro Bono Counsel Nura Maznavi, with valuable support from Debra Abelson, Rob Aponte, Amanda Ellis, Tricia Peavler, Sam Rosen, and Annette Young.

The virtual event will take place at 6:30 pm Eastern. To learn more and register to attend, please click here

 

CATEGORIES: Litigation

PEOPLE: Debbie L. Berman, Howard S. Suskin, Gabrielle Sigel, Corinne M. Smith, Reanne Zheng, Matthew G. Lawson, Miriam J. Wayne, Robert C. Harmala, Aaron R. Cooper, Daniel S. McCord, Andrew J. Plague, Illyana A. Green, Laurel A. Raymond, Michael R. Greubel

November 24, 2021 Third Circuit Supports Pro Bono Client’s Request for Protection from Deportation

Yemeni client Adel Ghanem presented evidence that “overwhelmingly demonstrates” his prior persecution on account of his political opinion, and that if he were returned to Yemen he would likely be tortured, a Third Circuit panel said in September.

In the opinion, the court vacated a Board of Immigration Appeals' decision that denied Mr. Ghanem’s request for protection from deportation, saying the board “ignore[d] overwhelming evidence" that he had been persecuted and would likely be tortured for his political beliefs if returned to Yemen.

News of the decision was reported by Bloomberg and Law360.

Associate William R. Weaver represented Mr. Ghanem.  He was supervised by Partners Ian Heath Gershengorn and Matthew E. Price

CATEGORIES: Appellate, Asylum, Litigation

PEOPLE: William R. Weaver (Will)

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