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Carachuri-Rosendo v. Holder

From lawbrain.com

The Supreme Court held that simple possession offenses are not aggravated felonies under 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(43). Therefore, Carachuri-Rosendo cannot be automatically ineligible for cancellation of removal. Carachuri-Rosendo v. Holder, Slip Opinion No. 09-60.



Procedural Facts


Jose Angel Carachuri-Rosendo ("Petitioner"), a lawful permanent resident of the United States, was subjected to two misdemeanor drug offenses in Texas. The first offense was for possession of a small amount of marijuana. The second offense was for possession of one antianxiety tablet without a prescription.

After the second offense, the federal government initiated removal proceedings to which petitioner disputed pursuant to the Immigration and Nationality Act. Petitioner claimed he was eligible for discretionary cancellation because he had not been convicted of an "aggravated felony" as defined in 8 U.S.C. § 1229b(a)(3).

The Board of Immigration Appeals held that petitioner's second offense was an "aggravated felony" that eliminated his eligibility for cancellation of removal. The Fifth Circuit court affirmed the Board's decision by relying on the holding in Lopez v. Gonzales, 549 U.S. 47 (2006). The court concluded that petitioner's second offense could have hypothetically been prosecuted as a felony; therefore, petitioner remains disqualified for removal cancellation.

Legal Analysis and Conclusion

Effects of the Law


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