Rosa Pena v. Sessions, No. 17-1310 (1st Cir. 2018)Annotate this Case
The First Circuit remanded this immigration case to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) due to its insufficient explanation of why the least culpable conduct prohibited under Mass. Gen. Laws ch. 266, 2 is morally reprehensible, and why the statute’s requirement of “malice,” as construed by Massachusetts courts, qualifies the crime as a crime involving moral turpitude (CIMT).
Petitioner, a native and citizen of the Dominican Republic, was charged as removable. Petitioner denied his removability and, in the alternative, requested several forms of relief. Petitioner was previously convicted of the crime of Massachusetts arson. The immigration judge (IJ) concluded that Petitioner’s Massachusetts crime was categorically a CIMT. The IJ also found Petitioner ineligible for relief from removal on the basis that he failed to prove that his conviction was not an aggravated felony. The BIA dismissed Petitioner’s appeal in an opinion that replicated the IJ’s reasoning. The First Circuit granted Petitioner’s petition for review, vacated the BIA’s opinion, and remanded for further proceedings for the reasons set forth above.
The court issued a subsequent related opinion or order on February 15, 2018.