Courts

Supreme Court: Immigrants Who Lie to Feds Can Lose Citizenship

In what would seem an obvious question, a key court case has made its way through the corridors of the judiciary branch finally to the Supreme Court.

It concerns a Serbian refugee who came to the U.S. and was finally granted citizenship, but afterward it was learned she had lied on her application.

Two federal courts and finally the Supreme Court all agreed: if you lie to federal officials about your reason for immigrating, it is perfectly legal to strip you of your citizenship.

So there you have it, folks. Not everything coming out of DC is all bad. Once in a while things go as they should.

Here’s more from Breitbart…

The Supreme Court on Thursday held that federal law authorizes courts to strip immigrant citizens of their U.S. citizenship if they obtained it as a result of making false statements to the federal government.

Federal law found at 18 U.S.C. § 1425(a) makes it a crime to “knowingly procur[e], contrary to law, the naturalization of any person” to become a U.S. citizen. (“Naturalization” is the legal term for becoming a citizen.) Moreover, a second federal statute, 8 U.S.C. § 1451(e) adds that a foreigner who obtains U.S. citizenship through such a violation will lose that newly granted citizenship.

Divna Maslenjak is a Serb who, along with her husband and two children, sought refugee status in 1998 to flee Bosnia. As part of seeking protected status, she swore under oath that the family feared persecution because her husband evaded military service. They were admitted to the United States in 2000 as refugees.

In 2006, she applied for U.S. citizenship. One question on her application asked if she had ever given “false or misleading information” while applying for immigration benefits. Another asked if she had “lied … to gain entry or admission” in this country. She answered “no” to both and became an American citizen in 2007.

Those answers were false. Her husband had served in the Bosnian Serb Army. A third federal statute, 18 U.S.C. § 1015(a), criminalizes making a false sworn statement during naturalization. The U.S. government argued that her statement violating § 1015(a) also counts as a violation of § 1425(a), which meant she must lose her citizenship under § 1451(e).

A judge on the federal district court accepted that argument and stripped Maslenjak of her citizenship. The Sixth Circuit appeals court affirmed.

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