7th Circuit upholds denial of alien's motion to dismiss

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The 7th Circuit Court of Appeals sidestepped ruling directly on the exhaustion requirement of a federal law dealing with an alien’s challenge to the validity of a deportation order. The appellate court could affirm the denial of the man’s motion to dismiss because he failed to meet any of the law’s exhaustion requirements.

In United States of America v. Mario Arita-Campos, No. 09-2368, Mario Arita-Campos moved to dismiss his 2005 indictment in Indiana for violating 8 U.S.C. Section 1326(a), which makes it illegal to re-enter the country after being deported. Arita-Campos first came to the U.S. illegally when he was 14. After he was caught by immigration officials, he failed to show at his hearing and was ordered to be deported in absentia. He had provided a mailing address to officials before the hearing.

Ten years later, he resurfaced in Illinois and was deported again. Then he re-entered the country and was caught in Indiana. He was indicted here for violating Section 1326(a), but he claimed he never received notice of the 1994 hearing, so it couldn’t be the basis for his violation of the 2005 indictment.
The District Court denied his motion to dismiss, finding he failed to exhaust his administrative remedies or show the hearing was fundamentally unfair. He pleaded guilty but reserved the right to appeal.

A defendant may collaterally attack the deportation order underlying an offense under Section 1326, but the burden of proof is on the defendant. The law says that in order to challenge the validity of a deportation order, the alien must exhaust any administrative remedies available; must demonstrate that the deportation proceedings at which the order was issued improperly deprived the alien of the opportunity for judicial review; and must demonstrate the entry of the order was fundamentally unfair.

Some Circuit Courts have held that the defendant must satisfy all three prongs to prevail in a collateral attack; the 9th Circuit Court held the exhaustion requirement can’t bar collateral review when the waiver of right to administrative appeal didn’t comport with due process. The 7th Circuit has yet to discuss the distinction between the Circuit Courts or expressly hold that all three requirements must be met. The appellate court decided it didn’t have to resolve any of those issues today because Arita-Campos failed to satisfy any of the three requirements.

He had ample time to file a motion to reopen the case upon the entry of the final decision, but failed to do so. Arita-Campos also didn’t attempt to show that habeas relief was unavailable to him. He also didn’t show that his due process rights were violated and he suffered from prejudice from the deportation proceedings, the judges ruled.  


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  1. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  2. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  3. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.

  4. rensselaer imdiana is doing same thing to children from the judge to attorney and dfs staff they need to be investigated as well

  5. Sex offenders are victims twice, once when they are molested as kids, and again when they repeat the behavior, you never see money spent on helping them do you. That's why this circle continues