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"Videoconferencing Obstructed the Judge's Gaydar":

That's one of the claims in Eke v. Mukasey, a case stemming from Eke's prospective deportation for committing an aggravated felony:

Eke claims that the government violated his due process rights by conducting his hearing by televideo rather than in person. Eke contends that if the IJ had seen him in person, the IJ would have recognized that Eke is in fact homosexual.

No dice, says the Seventh Circuit. (Note that the criminal law rules, under which a defendant and the witnesses must generally be physically present at trial, don't apply in administrative cases, such as immigration hearings.)

hmmmmm:
I think "jammed" the judge's gaydar is the proper term.
1.16.2008 4:10pm
Ex-Fed (mail) (www):
Maybe if he had watched it in hi-def.
1.16.2008 4:11pm
Bruce Hayden (mail) (www):
Ok, apparently, the claim was that the guy was gay and that should have prevented him from being deported back to where he was from, despite having been found to have committed aggravated felonies in the form of attempted identity theft. He also claimed that he had only attempted the identity theft and so hadn't committed such.

Yes, he may be persecuted if he is returned, though he was unable to prove that. But my view is that he should have thought of that before committing the aggravated felonies. And I think that we clearly don't want a claim of homosexuality to sidetrack deportation of felons. You might be able to argue that allowances should be made for someone who comes here claiming persecution, but, here, the claim was after the fact. That is the sort of precedent we don't need, in order to keep this sort of defense from becoming automatic in order to prevent deportation.
1.16.2008 4:56pm
Happyshooter:
That sounds like a good argument. The purpose of a hearing in person is to present your and present the witnesses in their whole demeanor.

He is arguing that by going with video the judge didn't see the entire testimony.

The con may not perfect, but I believe that even in admin proceedings due process includes notice and opportunity to be heard, and he says he was not heard.
1.16.2008 4:59pm
Happyshooter:
...your case...
1.16.2008 4:59pm
Houston Lawyer:
If you fear persecution in your home country and come here, you should be prepared to behave or get sent back.
1.16.2008 5:07pm
PLR:
The prince should be happy to go back to Nigeria, that country is full of unclaimed money from plane crashes, just waiting to be transferred into his stateside bank account.

But with his luck, his return flight will be one of those crashed ones.
1.16.2008 5:18pm
Richard Gould-Saltman (mail):
"He took refuge in an isolated
village for three years, until he obtained the documentation
needed to come to the United States, which he believed
would be more accepting of his sexual orientation.
Once in the United States, he lived briefly with his
sister, but, he testified, she asked him to leave because
of his gay lifestyle. This rejection prompted him to divorce
his Nigerian wife and to marry an American woman
."

Whatta guy! A prince among men, so to speak. . . .
1.16.2008 6:02pm
Cold Warrior:
Happyshooter said:


He is arguing that by going with video the judge didn't see the entire testimony.

The con may not perfect, but I believe that even in admin proceedings due process includes notice and opportunity to be heard, and he says he was not heard.


Which wouldn't be such a bad argument. Except that the 7th Cir. has used up a whole lot of ink over the last few years arguing that it is clear error for immigration judges to base their credibility determination on things like appearance and demeanor.

Example:

Judge: "The applicant testified before me for 4 hours, and I find that there is nothing about his appearance or mannerisms that would cause any observer to believe that he is gay."

7th Circuit: Clear error. The judge has interjected his own biases and opinions regarding what a gay man looks like and talks like.

So in this case, the applicant wanted to appear in person before the judge so that the judge could say:

"The applicant testified before me for 4 hours, and I find that his appearance and demeanor would cause even the casual observer to believe that he is gay."

Now, really, in light of the 7th Circuit's jurisprudence, could this request really be taken seriously?
1.16.2008 6:46pm
David M. Nieporent (www):
If you fear persecution in your home country and come here, you should be prepared to behave or get sent back.
Sure, but the real problem, if you read the opinion, is simply that there was zero credible evidence that he actually had a fear of persecution, because there was zero credible evidence that he actually was gay. (The claim relied solely on his word, but he had changed his story many times on that precise point.)

And he hadn't sought asylum when he arrived here; he suddenly discovered this fear when he was going to be deported.
1.16.2008 7:28pm
gasman (mail):
Gaydar depends upon the propagation of gay rays through the ether. At distance they become faint and are lost in the background radiation from the large government antennas beaming signals at the helpless populace.
Some of the wisest on the closed ward recognize that an aluminum foil helmet will protect them from the government mind probe and gay rays.
1.16.2008 8:06pm
Harry Eagar (mail):
If you think I look homosexual, even if I say I'm not, can I still claim bennies and protections as an honorary member of a protected class?
1.16.2008 9:37pm
NickM (mail) (www):
Was he planning on dressing like one of the Village People, but found out that on video it just looks like a strange shirt?

Did videoconferencing prevent the judge from seeing that he had on leather chaps that don't cover the buttocks?

What exactly was supposed to show up only in "in-person gaydar"?

Nick
1.17.2008 7:17am
markm (mail):
I think it more likely that the IJ's skepticism about him being gay is because he got divorced and then married another woman while in America.
1.17.2008 9:48am