Cases & Deals

Ethiopian's application for U.S. political asylum reopened

Clients Ethiopian applicant for U.S. political asylum

Jones Day represented an Ethiopian applicant for asylum who had sought to reopen removal proceedings based on new evidence of persecution and changed circumstances in Ethiopia. The Board of Immigration Appeals denied the motion to reopen in a brief opinion that did not analyze the new evidence, and stated that there had been no changed conditions in Ethiopia despite significant evidence (including evidence from the U.S. State Department) to the contrary.

Jones Day was successful before the Seventh Circuit, which held that the Board of Immigration Appeals abused its discretion in the handling of our client's motion to reopen. On remand to the Board of Immigration Appeals, Jones Day was successful in having the Board reopen the decision and remand to an Immigration Judge so that the client's new claims may be heard.

In December 2007, the Seventh Circuit awarded Jones Day attorney's fees for its appellate representation under the Equal Access to Justice Act, which awards fees to prevailing parties when the Government's litigation position is not "substantially justified."

Thomas J. Davis (Washington), an associate in the Issues & Appeals Practice, was the primary professional on the case and presented oral argument to the Seventh Circuit. Greg Castanias (Washington), and Lee Ann Russo (Chicago), were supervising partners.

Gebreeyesus v. Gonzales, 482 F.3d 952 (7th Cir. 2007)