Justia Government & Administrative Law Opinion Summaries

Articles Posted in US Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
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The First Circuit denied the petition for review of a decision of the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) denying Petitioner's application for cancellation of removal, holding that substantial evidence supported the BIA's determination that Petitioner had not shown prejudice, and the BIA committed no error of law in that ruling.Petitioner, a native of Haiti, was charged as removable under 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(2)(C) based on a firearm conviction. Petitioner filed applications for asylum, withholding of removal, protection under the Convention Against Torture, and cancellation of removal. The immigration judge (IJ) denied relief, and the BIA upheld the IJ's determination. The First Circuit denied Petitioner's petition for review, holding that Petitioner was deserving of cancellation of removal. View "Dorce v. Garland" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit denied Petitioner's petition for review of the ruling of the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) vacating the immigration judge's (IJ) decision granting Petitioner's application for cancellation of removal and ordering Petitioner removed, holding that the BIA did not commit reversible legal error.Petitioner, a native and citizen of Guatemala, conceded that he was removable from the United States but sought cancellation of removal predicated on the impact his removal would have on his young children. The IJ granted the application, concluding that Petitioner established the requisite extreme hardship. The BIA reversed, holding that the IJ incorrectly concluded that the hardships presented were sufficient to satisfy the applicable standard. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that Petitioner failed to show that the BIA misconstrued or overlooked relevant evidence and that there was no evidence that the BIA applied an improper standard. View "Domingo-Mendez v. Garland" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit vacated the judgment the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) affirming the denial of Appellant's request for withholding of removal under 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3) and protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT), 8 C.F.R. 1208. 16(c)-1208.18 and the denial of her motion to remand, holding that the BIA abused its discretion in denying Appellant's motion to remand.Appellant, a citizen and native of El Salvador, pursued withholding of removal under 8 U.S.C. 1231(b)(3) and protection under the CAT. An immigration judge (IJ) denied Appellant's claims on the basis that she was not credible. On appeal, Appellant sought to, among other things, remand her case for consideration of new evidence that she claimed had not been previously available. The BIA upheld the IJ's adverse credibility finding and affirmed the denial of relief. The First Circuit vacated the BIA's decision and remanded the case, holding that the BIA abused its discretion in determining that the new evidence was not likely to change the result in this case. View "Rivera-Medrano v. Garland" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit vacated the judgment of the district court denying Plaintiff's motion for leave to proceed under a pseudonym, holding that the district court did not apply the appropriate standard for adjudicating such motions.Plaintiff filed suit against Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) alleging breach of contract, promissory estoppel, and denial of basic fairness related to the investigation of Plaintiff for sexual harassment while he was a student at MIT. In his complaint, Plaintiff challenged the findings of the Committee on Discipline and the ensuing sanction of expulsion. On the same day he filed suit Plaintiff filed an ex parte motion to proceed by pseudonym. The district court denied the motion in a minute order. The First Circuit vacated the order, holding that the district court did not apply the appropriate standard for adjudicating motions for leave to proceed under pseudonyms, requiring remand. View "Doe v. Mass. Institute of Technology" on Justia Law

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The Supreme Court remanded this immigration case to the Boards of Immigration Appeals (BIA) after it affirmed an immigration judge's (IJ) decision to deny Petitioner's applications for relief from removal based on two marijuana offenses found by the IJ and the BIA to be "particularly serious" pursuant to 8 U.S.C. 1158(b)(2)(A)(ii) and 1231(b)(3)(B)(ii), holding that remand was required.The IJ found Petitioner removable based on two Massachusetts state court convictions involving marijuana. The BIA upheld the IJ's determination that Petitioner was ineligible for asylum and withholding of removal for having been convicted of a particularly serious crime. The Supreme Court granted Petitioner's petition for review, holding that there was not a sufficient rational explanation to explain the BIA's conclusion that Petitioner's minor marijuana offenses were particularly serious crimes and that remand was required. View "Dor v. Garland" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit dismissed Petitioner's petition for review of an immigration judge's (IJ) denial of his application for withholding of removal and protection under the Convention Against Torture and denied Petitioner's petition to review the Board of Immigration Appeals' (BIA) denial of his motion to reopen proceedings, holding that Petitioner was not entitled to relief.On January 16, 2020, the BIA dismissed Petitioner's appeal of the IJ's denial of his application for withholding of removal and protection under CAT. On June 10, 2020, the BIA denied Petitioner's motion to reopen. Petitioner petitioned for review of both decisions. The First Circuit held (1) Petitioner's petition for review was untimely as to the January 16 decision; and (2) the BIA did not err by denying Petitioner's motion to reopen his orders of removal. View "Sarmiento v. Garland" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit denied Petitioners' petition for review in this action challenging a final rule promulgated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) that set the framework through which applicants may register to lawfully manufacture and cultivate cannabis for research purposes, holding that Petitioners were not entitled to relief on their claims.Petitioners - Dr. Lyle Craker, a botany professor, and Scottsdale Research Institute (SRI), a clinical research company - brought this action raising two perceived procedural defects with the DEA's notice of proposed rulemaking that would demand that the final rule be set aside. The First Circuit denied relief, holding (1) Petitioners were not entitled to relief on their claim that the APA required the DEA to include more detail about the legal basis of the proposed rule; (2) the proposed rule did not exceed the DEA's rulemaking authority; (3) Petitioners' challenge to the DEA's definition of "medicinal cannabis" was unavailing; and (4) the DEA's new regulatory framework for registrations was not arbitrary, capricious, or otherwise contrary to law. View "Craker v. U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration" on Justia Law

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In this dispute between the Maine lobster industry and the National Marine Fisheries Service (the Agency) over a rule barring frequently employed methods of lobstering the First Circuit lifted its issuance of a preliminary injunction and remanded the case for further proceedings, holding that Plaintiffs were unlikely to succeed on the merits of their claim.Plaintiffs, a union of oyster fishers and fishing companies, challenged a regulation issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service in August 2021 that prohibited lobster fishing with vertical buoy lines in certain areas during certain times of year. After the district court granted a preliminary injunction enjoining enforcement of the seasonal disclosure, the government and conservation grounds sought a stay of the order. The First Circuit first stayed the preliminary injunction and then vacated the injunction, holding that Plaintiffs were unlikely to succeed on the merits of their claim. View "District 4 Lodge of the International Ass'n v. Raimondo" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit affirmed the judgment of the district court rejecting Appellants' argument that the Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico acted arbitrarily and capriciously in objecting to four laws enacted by the Puerto Rico legislature, holding that there was no error or abuse of discretion.In legislation addressing Puerto Rico's fiscal crisis, the Board was given the authority to object to and block the implementation of local laws that are "significantly inconsistent" with efforts to the Commonwealth to fiscal solvency. The Commonwealth filed suit in 2020 seeking a declaration that, for each of the four laws in question, the Commonwealth had complied with federal compliance certification requirements. The Board filed counterclaims requesting injunctive relief barring the implementation and enforcement of each law. The district court upheld the laws. The First Circuit affirmed, holding that the Board did not act arbitrarily and capriciously in exercising its authority under the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act. View "Pierluisi v. Financial Oversight & Management Board for Puerto Rico" on Justia Law

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The First Circuit granted a petition for review of a ruling by the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) that affirmed the final order of removal entered against Petitioner pursuant to 8 U.S.C. 1229-1229a and vacated the BIA's ruling,Petitioner conceded removability but sought relief from removal based on asylum and withholding of removal, as well as the Convention Against Torture (CAT). The immigration judge (IJ) denied the applications, and the BIA affirmed. The First Circuit vacated the BIA's ruling in part, holding (1) Petitioner was not entitled to relief on his assertion of bias; and (2) because the BIA upheld an adverse credibility determination that the IJ reached in part based on an inconsistency in Petitioner's story that simply was not an inconsistency, the BIA's ruling affirming the IJ's denial of that claim must be vacated. View "Pujols v. Garland" on Justia Law