The Latest: Judge Orders for Removal of Asylum Seeker in WNC

Jun 11, 2019

An immigration judge in Charlotte is ordering for the removal of a Salvadorian woman in Western North Carolina who fled gang violence in her home country.

Judge Stuart Couch Tuesday canceled the hearing for the woman BPR is calling “Rihanna,” for safety reasons. She was scheduled to appear in an immigration courtroom in Charlotte Wednesday.

Her attorney was requesting to have her case terminated because she is now eligible to apply for a green card. In his order, Judge Couch says that could take more than a year and he can’t make a decision based on an “indeterminate future event.” The judge also cites the growing backlog of pending cases and the need for “administrative efficiency.” His decision comes as immigration judges across the country face a backlog of more than 890,000 pending cases.

The Department of Justice last year also implemented a quota system where immigration Judges are reviewed, based on how well they clear their dockets.

Rihanna’s attorney says he plans on appealing to the Board of Immigration Appeals.