Cases & Deals

Asylum client wins asylum after ten month wait

Clients Client BN

Jones Day client, B.N., a bureaucrat and diplomat in the Democratic Republic of Congo and member of the minority political party, Movement du Liberation du Congo (MLC), received a grant of asylum following his interview with an asylum officer. After the close of the most recent civil war in the DRC, a constitution was drafted and a peace reached between the various factions. Although the civil war was over, rival parties continued to employ intimidation and violence in an effort to control the country. The most powerful political party, in particular, led by President Joseph Kabila, used the resources of the state under its control to commit crimes against its opponents.

Because the MLC controlled a minority of seats in the government, B.N. was able to retain his government position. Eventually, he was approached by Kabila supporters and asked to become a spy against his own party. After refusing to betray the MLC, our client and his family endured a night raid of their home by Kabila's soldiers. The soldiers beat B.N. until he was unconscious, raped his wife and children, and took him to an infamous political prison where he was further tortured and denied food and medical attention. B.N. was released from prison only after his family bribed the prison commandant, who, although allowing B.N. to escape, admonished him that his name was on a government blacklist and he would be killed if captured again. He then fled to the U.S.

Jones Day attorneys filed the client's asylum application, worked with B.N. to prepare him for and represented him at his interview with the asylum office in November of last year. After waiting nearly ten months for a result, the asylum officer found him to be credible, to have been persecuted because of his political opinion and to have a well founded fear that he would be persecuted if returned to the DRC.

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