Hazama v. Tillerson, No. 15-2982 (7th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
Hazama, a U.S. citizen, is married to Ghneim, a citizen of the Palestinian Authority, currently residing there. Hoping to obtain a permanent resident visa for Ghneim, Hazama filed a Petition for Alien Relative with USCIS, which was approved in 2011. Ghneim still had to wait until a visa number became available and had to appear for an interview with a consular officer. Ghneim appeared for his interview at the Jerusalem Consulate in 2013. The officer denied the application, citing: the commission of a crime of moral turpitude, 8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(2)(A)(i)(I); previous removal from the U.S., section 1182(a)(9)(A)(ii); and unlawful presence in the U.S., section 1182(a)(9)(B)(i)(II). Ghneim's petition for a waiver of the “previously removed” and “unlawful presence” grounds was denied. In 2015, an officer again denied Ghneim’s application, for having personally engaged in terrorist activities, 8 U.S.C. 1182(a)(3)(B)(i). The district court found that the consular official’s reliance on the terrorism provision satisfied all relevant legal standards. The Seventh Circuit affirmed, rejecting their mandamus petition. The Supreme Court has consistently recognized that unadmitted, nonresident aliens have no free-standing constitutional right to enter the U.S.. Congress delegated broad power to the Executive Branch to decide who will have the privilege of entering; courts generally have no authority to second-guess those decisions.