United States District Court, E.D. New York
February 17, 2004.
ALEXIS MILTON EDWARDS, Petitioner
IMMIGRATION AND NATURALIZATION SERVICE, Respondent
The opinion of the court was delivered by: JOHN GLEESON, District Judge
MEMORANDUM AND ORDER
Petitioner Alexis Milton Edwards seeks a writ of habeas corpus on the
ground that he is a "national of the United States" under
8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(22). Respondent argues, inter alia, that the petition
should be dismissed on the ground that under 8 U.S.C. § 1252(b)(5),
nationality claims must be reviewed in the first instance in the Courts
of Appeals. I agree. This Court does not have jurisdiction over Edwards's
claim that he is a United States citizen. Section 242(b)(5) of the
Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1252(b)(5), vests
jurisdiction over nationality claims in the courts of appeals.*fn1
Taniguchi v. Schultz,
303 F.3d 950, 955 (9th Cir. 2002) (affirming district court's dismissal
of petitioner's citizenship claim for lack of jurisdiction on the ground
that such claims must be brought in the court of appeals); Batista v.
Ashcroft, 270 F.3d 8, 12 (1st Cir. 2001) (affirming district court's
transfer to circuit court of petitioner's citizenship claim);
Alvarez-Garcia v. INS. 234 F. Supp.2d 283, 289-290 (S.D.N.Y. 2002). But
see Lee v. Ashcroft, No. 01 CV 0997, 2003 WL 21310247. at *5-6 (E.D.N.Y.
May 27, 2003) (holding that district courts retain habeas corpus
jurisdiction over citizenship claims); cf. Liu v. INS 293 F.3d 36, 40 (2d
Cir. 2002) (extending INS. v. St. Cyt, 533 U.S. 289 (2001), to
noncriminal aliens because "St, Cyr. held as a matter of statutory
construction that habeas jurisdiction under § 2241 was not repealed by
AEDPA and IIRIRA" (quotation marks omitted)). "The provision channel[ing]
nationality petitions . . . to the Courts of Appeals . . . does not
remove an avenue of relief, or leave any class of petitioners without the
ability to challenge the legality of their confinenicut, because it
provides a forum for all petitioners raising nationality claims."
Marquez-Almanzar v. Ashcroft, No. 03 Civ. 1601, 2003 WL 21283418, at *5
(S.D.N.Y. June 3, 2003) (citing Taniguchi, 303 F.3d at 955).
Normally, the appropriate step would be to transfer the case to the
Second Circuit pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1631. See, e.g. Metelus v.
Ashcroft, No. 02 CV 6382, 2003 WL 21057302, at *2 (E.D.N.Y. May 7, 2003)
(transferring a nationality claim brought in a petition for a writ of
habeas corpus to the court of appeals); Hussein v. Ashcroft, No.
01-CV-1239, 2002 WL 21027604, at *2 (E.D.N.Y. Sept. 12, 2002) ("Where a
petitioner improperly brigs [a citizenship] claim in the district court,
the appropriate procedure is to transfer the claim to the court in which
the action or appeal could have been brought at the time it was filed or
28 U.S.C. § 1631; see also Franchi v. Manbeck, 947 F.2d 631, 634 (2d
Cir. 1991). Under 8 U.S.C. § 1252(b)(1), a petitioner must seek review in
the court of appeals within 30 days from the date of the final order of
removal. See also Malvoisin v. INS, 268 F.3d 74, 75 (2d Cir. 2001)
(dismissing as untimely a petition for review filed one day late). Here,
the Board of Immigration Appeals issued Edwarde his final administrative
removal order on November 30, 2001. See Decl. of Steven J. Kim ¶ 13 &
Ex. K (sept. 13, 2002), Edwards v. INS, No. 02-CV-3309, 2003 U.S. Dist.
LEXIS 5473 (E.D.N.Y. Mar., 28, 2003). Edwards's instant petition,
however, was not filed until November 4, 2002 (it was dated October 13,
2002), well after the 30-day time limit. Transfer is therefore
inappropriate under § 1631. See Taniguchi v. Schultz, 303 F.3d 950, 956
(9th Cir. 2002) (declining to transfer a habeas petition after the
district court dismissed a nationality claim because a petition for
review in the court of appeals would have been untimely as of the date
the habeas petition was filed).
For the foregoing reasons, Edwards's petition is dismissed.