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Gorsuch Rejects Deportation Mandate for Legal Immigrant Convict

Gorsuch Rejects Deportation Mandate for Legal Immigrant Convict

WASHINGTON-Justice Neil Gorsuch joined liberal justices to provide the tie-breaking vote in a Supreme Court ruling Tuesday that said a federal immigration law requiring deportation for certain crimes was unconstitutionally vague.

In 2007 and 2009, he pleaded no contest to charges of residential burglary in California, and an immigration judge determined that Dimaya should be deported because of his two state court convictions.

The court's 5-4 decision concerns a provision of immigration law that defines a "crime of violence".

Michael Kagan of the University of Nevada Las Vegas, an expert on immigration law, notes that Dimaya's challenge began when President Barack Obama was still in office and that Tuesday's ruling is "another sign from the court that due process matters when it comes to deportation".

The court said the part of the law in question is too vague to be enforced.

More news: Analysts Ranking Activities: Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK)

A federal appeals court in San Francisco previously struck down the provision as too vague, and on Monday the Supreme Court agreed.

The decision is a loss for President Donald Trump's administration, which has emphasized stricter enforcement of immigration law.

The federal government appealed to the Supreme Court, arguing that the U.S. Congress had reasonably identified a category of crimes that carry the risk of violence, and suggested that the justices should defer to the immigration authorities.

The case was initially argued in January 2017 by a court that was short a member because of Scalia's death and the refusal of Senate Republicans to act on Obama's nomination of Judge Merrick Garland.

The Supreme Court heard arguments in the case on October 2, the first day of its current nine-month term. An eight member court didn't decide the issue, presumably because the justices were deadlocked 4-4. Most of those focus on ousting illegal immigrants who never had permission to be in the US, while Tuesday's case deals with legal permanent residents who committed crimes while here, and whether those are serious enough to deserve automatic deportation. In doing so, Gorsuch was continuing the jurisprudence of Justice Antonin Scalia, who also sided with liberals when it came to the vagueness of statutes used to convict criminal defendants.


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