The judge in the case Wall examined, Ursula Ungaro-Benages, (contact her here ever so politely), a George H.W. Bush appointee, has a checkered history. She was accused of having an affair with a key witness in a trial she was presiding over, an affair which her ex-husband reportedly said ruined the marriage [Sexual affair between Miami judge, witness alleged amid tainted U.S. court proceedings, by Dan Christensen, Florida Bulldog, February 26, 2015]
In another case, after discovering she had Jewish ancestors, she asked then Chief Justice William Rehnquist to appoint a special judicial panel so she could cash in on a family fortune lost during the Holocaust [Holocaust suit raises foreign policy issue, by Ron Grossman, Chicago Tribune, July 7, 2003]
But Ungaro-Benages also has a certain contempt for the Constitution. The illegal alien Jorge Crespo-Cagnant had been previously removed from the country under an Expedited Removal Order. Under Section 302 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IRIRA), this is the legal process by which an illegal alien can be removed without judicial or administrative review.
Now the paper of record for Miami had reported the removal of Crespo-Cagnant was “unconstitutional.” Actually, Ungaro-Benages simply vacated the Expedited Removal Order.
Rebeca Sánchez-Roig, the attorney, recently won the case when U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro threw out an immigration agency order against Crespo-Cagnant that sought his expedited removal.In fact, not only the order not unconstitutional—what Ungaro-Benages did was unconstitutional. As the statute states:
“The court finds defendant’s expedited removal order was invalid,” Ungaro wrote in her Nov. 13 opinion. “Accordingly it is ordered and adjudged that defendant’s motion to dismiss [the removal order] is granted.”
Crespo-Cagnant, 36, won the case because his attorney demonstrated that immigration officials had failed to consider her client’s plea not to be returned to Mexico for fear of persecution because he is gay.
“What this means is that he is free out of any kind of criminal charges,” Sánchez-Roig said. “That hopefully the Border [Patrol] will vacate the expedited removal order that the judge ruled was unconstitutional and José will get an opportunity then to adjust his status.”
[Gay Mexican Immigrant Wins Federal Court Case, Can Remain In Miami, By Alfonso Chardy, Miami Herald, December 22, 2015. Emphasis added].
(A) SCREENING.— (i) IN GENERAL.—If an immigration officer determines that an alien (other than an alien described in subparagraph (F)) who is arriving in the United States or is described in clause (iii) is inadmissible under section 212(a)(6)(C) or 212(a)(7) [Ed. Note: in the United States illegally], the officer shall order the alien removed from the United States without further hearing or review unless the alien indicates either an intention to apply for asylum under section 208 or a fear of persecution. [Emphasis added]Ungaro-Benages has no authority to review the Expedited Removal Order.
Now, Crespo-Cagnant claims that when he was first removed from the United States with an Expedited Removal Order, he told the Border Patrol Agent he was afraid to go back because he was homosexual. There was no record of this claim in his interview before he was ordered removed, nor in the subsequent times he was arrested and removed.
As Wall’s article showed, his claim of possible persecution in Mexico for his homosexuality is a fiction. And we only have his word regarding his claim he told arresting officers about his fears.
It’s also hard to believe the claims by Crespo-Cagnant that the Spanish-speaking Border Patrol Agents somehow did not understand his statement.
One, why is Crespo-Cagnant speaking in Spanish despite spending all those years working and studying in the United States? Second, all Border Patrol Agent trainees go through Spanish-language training and do not graduate unless they are proficient in Spanish. They have to complete a year-long post-academy course in Spanish as well.
Crespo-Cagnant quite possibly committed perjury in his testimony, and both Ungaro-Benages and his attorney, Rebeca Sánchez-Roig, knew it. Sounds like a violation of Title 18 United States Code Section 1621.
Importantly, after successfully entering illegally, Crespo-Cagnant did not apply for political asylum, but instead applied for adjustment of status based on a homosexual "marriage." Clearly his attorney would have known that application would have been denied because Crespo-Cagnant's long history of immigration arrests and denial of visas for fraud. Hence his playing the homosexual card.
The blogger Federale (Email him) is a 4th generation Californian and a veteran of federal law enforcement, including service in the legacy Immigration and Naturalization Service, the Department of Homeland Security, and other federal law enforcement agencies.
Federale`s opinions do not represent those of the Department of Homeland Security or the federal government, and are an exercise of rights protected by the 1st Amendment to the Constitution of the United States.