Mendoza-Pablo v. Holder

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Immigration
  • Date Filed: 02-07-2012
  • Case #: 07-73592
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Senior District Judge Rakoff for the Court; Circuit Judge Tashima; and partial concurrence and dissent by Circuit Judge Rawlinson
  • Full Text Opinion

"Where a pregnant mother is persecuted in a manner that materially impedes her ability to provide for the basic needs of her child, where that child's family has undisputedly suffered severe persecution, and where the newborn child suffers serious deprivations directly attributable not only to those facts, but also to the material ongoing threat of continued persecution of the child and the child's family, that child may be said to have suffered persecution and therefore be eligible for asylum under the INA."

A member of the Mam Mayan group, Mendoza-Pablo appeals the Immigration Judge and Board of Immigration Appeals' denials of "his applications for asylum, withholding of removal, and protection under the Convention Against Torture." The Court remands the BIA's holding that Mendoza-Pablo was ineligible because he "had not been the victim of past persecution because he was never personally challenged or confronted by any potential persecutor." Mendoza-Pablo was unborn at the time of his family's persecution but suffered malnutrition in his infant-hood as a direct result of his family being forced to flee to the mountains. Further, his family's fear of persecution caused their flight to Mexico, "which in turn inflicted further serious deprivations on" Mendoza-Pablo. Even in the absence of expert testimony, the Court recognizes "the likelihood that these deprivations would have some deleterious and long-lasting effects." Taken together, the Court finds these facts sufficient to support a finding of past-prosecution despite the indirectness of that persecution on Mendoza-Pablo personally. PETITION GRANTED; REMANDED.

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