Photo: Supreme Court to Hear Case of Man on the Verge of Deportation
In the years following Joel Judulang’s parents’ arrival in the U.S., they became naturalized citizens. However, they failed to filed the proper paperwork to qualify their then 8-year-old son for citizenship.
More than two decades ago he was involved in a altercation that resulted in a person being shot and killed. He was arrested and pled guilty to voluntary manslaughter.
In 2005, more than sixteen years after his conviction, the U.S. government commenced proceedings to deport Judulang from the United States based on his manslaughter conviction. And an immigration judge ruled that he was removable and the Board of Immigration Appeals dismissed his claims that he received derivative U.S. citizenship through his parents.
Earlier this year, it was argued that the circuit courts are split three ways as to whether lawful permanent residents can seek discretionary relief from removal after they are rendered as such through certain guilty pleas. Under current guidelines, an immigrant in Judulang’s situation must leave and re-enter the United States after their conviction to seek relief under former Section 212(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
On October 12, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Judulang’s case in Los Angeles where he is currently out on bail.