What's at Stake
Whether the Attorney General can create a category of "particularly serious crimes" beyond what Congress has designated as "aggravated felonies" and then deny asylum and witholding of removal to a refugee on the basis of such crimes and, if so, whether the decision to remove someone from the country based on a "particularly serious crime" without any regard for individual mitigating circumstances is subject to judicial review? CASE DISMISSED
This case presents two questions. The first is whether the Attorney General can expand the category of crimes that Congress has designated as a disqualification for asylum and witholding of removal. The second is whether courts have the power to review the purely legal question of whether the removal decision can be based solely on the crime committed or whether it must also consider the facts and circumstances surrounding the crime. The ACLU brief focuses on the latter question and argues that judicial review is consistent with the traditional role of habeas corpus and essential to ensure that government officials do not act beyond the scope of their lawful authority.