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APPAH v. SAVA
May 13, 1986
VINCENT APPAH, A 23 428 379, Petitioner,
CHARLES C. SAVA, as District Director of the Immigration & Naturalization Service for the New York district, Respondent
The opinion of the court was delivered by: HAIGHT
MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
In his habeas corpus petition, Vincent Appah claims that his continued detention by the Immigration and Naturalization Service ("INS") is unlawful, and that he should be released on his own recognizance or on an appropriate bond. The INS resists the petition.
The factual background appears from the decision rendered on December 30, 1985 by Immigration Judge Sydney B. Rosenberg in exclusionary proceedings involving Appah. I quote the opening paragraphs of Judge Rosenberg's opinion:
"The applicant [Appah] is a forty year old, married male alien, a native and citizen of Ghana, who is seeking admission to the United States as a returning resident.
"The applicant was granted adjustment of status to that of a lawful permanent resident under Section 245 of the Immigration and Nationality Act on September 4, 1980, based on his marriage on April 25, 1980, to Monica Janeice Woodridge, a United States citizen by birth.
"The applicant arrived at John F. Kennedy Airport, New York on June 9, 1985, seeking admission to the United States as a returning resident. He presented an alien registration card in the name of Vincent Appah. However, because he also had in his possession, three Ghanaian passports (two in the name of Vincent Appah and one in the name of Kwaku Abankwah Appah) and a U.S. passport in the name of Robert Woodbridge, and each one bearing the applicant's photograph, the immigrant inspector doubted that the applicant was the individual who was issued the alien registration card.
Appah was detained and placed in exclusion proceedings, charged with being excludable under section 212(a) of the Immigration and Naturalization Act of 1952, 8 U.S.C. § 1182(a) (the "Act"). That section of the Act lists 31 classes of "aliens" who "shall be excluded from admission into the United States." INS took the position that subsections a(19) and a(20) applied to Appah. They provide for exclusion of:
"(19) Any alien who seeks to procure, or has sought to procure, or has procured a visa or other documentation, or seeks to enter the United States, by fraud, or by willfully misrepresenting a material fact;
"(20) Except as otherwise specifically provided in this chapter, any immigrant who at the time of application for admission is not in possession of a valid unexpired immigrant visa, reentry permit, border crossing identification card, or other valid entry document required by this chapter, and a valid unexpired passport, or other suitable travel document, or document of identity and nationality, if such document is required under the regulations issued by the Attorney General pursuant to section 1181(a) of this title;..."
Subsequent investigation satisfied the INS that the alien registration card in Appah's possession did, in fact, belong to him. Therefore, the INS dropped the a(20) charge. The fate of the a(19) charge is less clear from the record, although Judge Rosenberg never sustained that charge. Instead, the exclusion proceedings against Appah continued on different grounds. As Judge Rosenberg explains:
"[T]he Service contends that the applicant, applied for and was issued a U.S. passport in 1982 under the name of Robert Woodridge, which he used to enter the United States on four prior occasions (Oct. 26, 1983, Jan. 21, 1984, April 28, 1984 and Sept. 4, 1984) as a United States citizen.
"On each of the four occasions, because the applicant was admitted as a U.S. citizen, he entered the U.S. without inspection. Since the applicant entered the United States on those occasions without inspection, the Service contends he is ...
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