Monday, August 31, 2009

Lyglenson Lemorin still sits in immigration jail

From Jay Weaver's article in today's Miami Herald:

A Tampa engineering student acquitted of terrorism-related charges walked out of an immigration court a free man earlier this month, after a judge rejected the U.S. government's bid to deport him to his native Egypt on identical charges.
Yet the same immigration judge sided with Department of Homeland Security lawyers last year when he ordered the removal of a Miami man to his native Haiti after he had been acquitted of terror-conspiracy charges.
Why did the immigration judge, Kenneth Hurewitz, grant the release of Youssef Megahed yet order the deportation of Lyglenson Lemorin? The lawyer who represented both men says it's because the evidence was stronger in the Lemorin case, though he disputes it was enough to deport him.
``The government's lawyers misunderstood that every case is different and you must plead what you're going to prove,'' Charles Kuck, an Atlanta attorney, said of the Megahed case. ``They failed to do that.''
Kuck said he believes Lemorin -- one of the so-called Liberty City Seven defendants -- has a good shot at his appeal, which will be considered this fall. Lemorin, 34, remains in custody.
Both Megahed and Lemorin are legal U.S. residents with no criminal histories who have lived in this country for years. Both also experienced a rare kind of ``double jeopardy'' -- being charged a second time in immigration court following acquittals in federal court.
Megahed, a 23-year-old former student at the University of South Florida, was arrested on a 2007 road trip in South Carolina along with a fellow classmate, Ahmed Mohamed. Both were charged with transporting explosives after police found model rocket propellants in the car's trunk.
Mohamed was also charged with providing ``material support'' for terrorism, because he created a You Tube video that showed how to convert a remote control toy vehicle into a bomb. He pleaded guilty to that charge last spring.
In early April, Megahed was acquitted in Tampa federal court on the explosives charges after his defense attorney argued that the materials found in the trunk -- PVC pipe and chemicals -- were homemade fireworks.
But a few days later, Megahed, while leaving a Wal-Mart store with his father, was arrested by Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents. He was charged again with the same terrorism-related explosives offense, only this time in immigration court, which is part of the Justice Department and has a lower standard of proof.
Megahed, who has lived in the United States since he was 11, faced deportation. His family, the Muslim community and others -- including four jurors in his criminal case -- expressed outrage.

They should be outraged. I'm sorry but if you are acquitted in federal court, immigration shouldn't be able to recharge you with the same conduct and be able to deport you based on a lower standard of proof. My prior coverage on this issue is here.


Anonymous said...

If you want to talk about an injustice, read the article in this week's New Yorker about the Texas arson case.

Anonymous said...

The prosecutors should feel good that an immigration judge has accomplished that which they could not.

Fake Fred Moreno said...

Another win for Paris!

O.J. said...

Maybe I'm missing something here, but how is this any different from an acquitted individual being order to pay damages after a finding in civil court?

Anonymous said...


Just read the Captain's post on the Justice Building Blog.

Do you think that Judge Moreno will be joining the State Court and their moratorium on hand-shaking at all courthouses?

Anonymous said...

That's hot

Anonymous said...

ridiculous david. of course the govt should be able to go to immigration court. Why would we have immigration laws then? Say you believed and could prove that there was convincing evidence that someone was a terrorist or provided material support to known terrorists, but not enough proof to obtain a criminal conviction. Wouldn't our justice system want that person acquitted in criminal court, but then at the same time shouldn't that person be deported? The fact that it takes this long is another story. Mr. Lemorin should have been processed much quicker than he seems to have been. But on the other hand that may be due to his own litigation efforts as well. Either way, you are wrong. Dead wrong.

Anonymous said...

947 why are you trying to reason with a zealot like markus. he is simple defendant's good government bad.

bail bonds henderson said...

I never understood it, but who actually has to foot the bill for the cost of transporting a detainee back to their old country?