Alvarado-Arenas v. Sessions, No. 15-2987 (8th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
Petitioner, a citizen of Mexico, challenged the denial of his motion to reopen an order of removal in absentia when he failed to appear for a removal hearing in an immigration court. The court concluded that petitioner failed to develop an argument explaining why his failure to appear was because of exceptional circumstances within the meaning of 8 U.S.C. 1229a(b)(5)(C). Assuming for the sake of analysis that petitioner's alleged absence from the United States could be an exceptional circumstance, the court concluded that the Board reasonably determined that petitioner was in the United States when the Department filed the Notice to Appear to initiate the removal proceedings, and the Board gave reasonable weight to the fact that petitioner's counsel verified the accuracy of the address and made no objection to the immigration court's jurisdiction.