Lara Rios Gets Time to Make Asylum Case

Sep 12, 2017

Zarana Robinson is Senior Supervisory Attorney at the immigration law firm LEYRUTA in Herndon, Virgina.

In May [2017], Harrisonburg’s Cesar Lara Rios was detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, and appeared to be set for deportation to Mexico. But his attorney made one more attempt to prevent that from happening, and over the weekend learned of the rare outcome, as WMRA’s Christopher Clymer Kurtz reports.

More than three months after filing a motion with the Board of Immigration Appeals, or BIA, Herndon-based immigration attorney Zarana Robinson learned Saturday that the BIA has decided to reopen Lara Rios’s case.

ROBINSON: There’s no threat of removal at this point. It’s just a matter of time before he’s out.

Whether or not Lara Rios will face a bond hearing before walking free, Robinson anticipates now having two or three years to substantiate his case for asylum based on fears for his safety should he return to Mexico, where he says several family members have been murdered.

Another option remains in play, too, as his mother, a legal resident with medical concerns and who relies on his support, has filed a petition on his behalf that would make him eligible for an unlawful presence waiver from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

Robinson said the drawn-out detention had Lara Rios and his family on the brink of withdrawing the motion to the BIA and accepting his deportation. However, Robinson instead filed a motion to expedite the decision, which was dated September 7 and arrived at her office on Saturday.

ROBINSON: He hung in there for another two, three weeks, it was good because it was a positive decision by the board.

Robinson said that in her 10 years of practice, she has never before been granted such a motion.