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Muiruri v. Lynch

United States Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit

October 14, 2015

William Muiruri, Petitioner
v.
Loretta E. Lynch, Respondent

Submitted September 22, 2015.

Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals.

For William Muiruri, Petitioner: Matthew Lorn Hoppock, Hoppock Law Firm, LLC, Overland Park, KS.

For Loretta E. Lynch, Respondent: Karen Yolanda Drummond, Tracey McDonald, Carl H. McIntyre, U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division, Office of Immigration Litigation, Washington, DC; Anthony Paul Nicastro, U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Immigration Litigation, Washington, DC.

Before LOKEN, BENTON, and SHEPHERD, Circuit Judges.

OPINION

Page 985

BENTON, Circuit Judge.

The Board of Immigration Appeals found William Muiruri removable under INA § 237(a)(3)(D), 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(3)(D). He appeals. Having jurisdiction under 8 U.S.C. § 1252, this court denies the petition.

Muiruri, a native of Kenya, overstayed his student visa. Immigration officials apprehended him. In a sworn statement, Muiruri admitted to falsely representing himself as a U.S. citizen. The Department of Homeland Security charged him with two counts of removability: (1) overstaying his visa in violation of INA 237(a)(1)(C)(I), and (2) falsely representing himself as a U.S. citizen in violation of INA 237(a)(3)(D). He applied for adjustment-of-status based on marriage to a U.S. citizen. The immigration judge held four hearings and issued one relevant order.

At the first hearing, the judge informed Muiruri of the statutory rights in 8 C.F.R. § 1240.10(a). At the second hearing, he entered pleadings as required by § 1240.10(c). Muiruri conceded the first count of removability, but denied falsely representing himself as a U.S. citizen--which would ban him from reentering the United States. The judge then scheduled a " removal hearing" on the false-representation and adjustment-of-status claims.

A month before the removal hearing, Muiruri filed a " Motion to Suppress." He argued he had been illegally searched and seized, and his sworn statement coerced. He further alleged a lack of sufficient evidence for the false-representation charge. In the Motion's prayer for relief, Muiruri requested that the judge either suppress all evidence from the unlawful search, seizure, and interrogation, or order an evidentiary hearing on the Motion. Finally, Muiruri requested that " should the Court decide against either of the above, it should consider the evidence and argument presented herein as it relates to a finding under INA 237(a)(3)(D) (False claim to citizenship)." Two weeks later, the government submitted " to be considered by the Immigration Court at [Muiruri's] hearing" I-9 forms and an employment application. In each, Muiruri checked the box indicating U.S. citizenship. On March 14, 2013--a week before the removal hearing--the immigration judge issued an order denying the Motion to Suppress and finding a violation of INA 237(a)(3)(D).

On March 22--the originally scheduled " removal hearing" --Muiruri acknowledged

Page 986

that the March 14 decision mooted his adjustment-of-status claim. The immigration judge granted Muiruri's request for a fourth and final hearing. There, Muiruri told the immigration judge he would not pursue a withholding-of-removal ...


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