Kelley Drye Achieves Deferral of Removal for Pro Bono Client from Jamaica
August 29, 2012

Kelley Drye successfully represented pro bono a Jamaican citizen on his application for deferral of removal under the United Nations Convention against Torture. Kelley Drye succeeded in demonstrating to the Immigration Court that the client, a gay man, would more likely than not be subjected to torture as a result of his sexual orientation if removed to Jamaica.

The U.S. State Department has reported that violence perpetrated against homosexuals in Jamaica is widespread and pervasive. The client in this case had personally been the victim of targeted violence while living in Jamaica, where he was attacked, beaten and threatened by a group of men in Montego Bay.

Kelley Drye represented the client from March 2012 thru the resolution of his case, with the assistance of Legal Aid Immigration Attorney Sarah Gillman. During that time the client was visited where he was detained in the Monmouth County Detention Center on several occasions, and submitted numerous reports and affidavits, expert findings, and a detailed memorandum of law to the Immigration Court in support of the client’s application for deferral of removal.

At the client’s final hearing on August 10, 2012, Kelley Drye successfully established the basis for granting the client’s claim through documentary evidence and witness testimony. The Immigration Judge granted the client’s application for relief under the Convention Against Torture from the bench. The client was released from custody later that day.

The client’s final hearing was attended by his friends and family members, and they shared in the client’s joy at being released from detention after almost a year and a half in custody. The client is being assisted in obtaining the benefits available to foreign nationals who have been granted deferral of removal.