Running head: Jacques Batiste Legal Memo
Jacques Batiste Legal Memorandum
TO: Attorney Libby
RE: Jacques Batiste reluctant to testify as a witness due to his immigration status.
FACTS: Jacques Batiste is a Canadian citizen, who wants to change his immigration status. Jacques Batiste has been working in a hotel near the Canadian border and has not been authorized to work/live in the United States. Jacques Batiste is engaged to an American citizen and plan on marry very soon. Jacques Batiste witnessed a drug transaction in the hotel in which he works and as a result the suspects assaulted him resulting in Jacques requiring medical attention, and evidence from the suspects called “stamp bags” being dropped. Jacques notified the manager and law enforcement was called. That same night several individuals died from an overdose caused by heroin sold from those distinctive stamp bags. Prosecutors want to prosecute the suspects for murder, but require Jacques help as he is a key witness on the drug transaction. Jacques is hesitant to cooperate due to fear and his current immigration status. Jacques Batiste has contacted our office regarding this matter.
ISSUE: Can Jacques Batiste change his immigration status or obtain an immigration “S” visa for testifying in court? Can Jacques Batiste obtain a immigration visa for being a victim of a crime?
Can Jacques Batiste obtain a green card is he marries a U.S. citizen?
ANSWER: Yes, if prosecutors obtain an S- Visa for Jacques Batiste for his corporation he could testify in the criminal proceedings. Yes, Mr. Batiste can obtain a “U” visa if he is a victim of crime. No, Mr. Batiste cannot obtain a green card if he marries a U.S. citizen, it is for legal residents.
RULES: Under 8 C.F.R. § 214.2 Special requirements for Admission, Extension, and Maintenance of Status. The S-visa is for the benefit of witnesses and informants who might not otherwise be legally able to enter or remain in the United States. This type of visa is limited by law through congress at 200 per fiscal year. This statue authorizes the Secretary of Homeland Security to waive most grounds of inadmissibility. If Jacques Batiste obtain a U-visa for being a victim of a crime after three years, Mr. Batiste could petition to obtain his green card.
ANALYSIS: Prosecutors can obtain an S-Visa for Jacques Batiste so that he can testify as their witness in the court proceedings, under 8 C.F.R. § 214.2 Special requirements for Admission, Extension, and Maintenance of Status. This visa is a special visa available to non-legal immigrants who assist law enforcement as a witness or informant. In the case Tse v. Attorney Gen. of U.S., 197 F. App’x 179 (3d Cir. 2006), Circuit Judge Sloviter held that grant of “S” visa based on alien’s cooperation in several prosecutions warranted remand. In this case Tse had been approved for an “S” visa because of his cooperation with authorities in several drug related prosecutions. In Tse v. Attorney Gen. of U.S. Tse obtain a written agreement for an “S” Visa before he testified in the court proceedings. Like Tse, Jacques Batiste is a witness of criminal activity in multiple counts of murder, assault, battery and drug distribution. Once terms of the “S” visa are complete Jacques Batiste may apply for permanent residency. To obtain a U-visa form I-485 under 8 CFR 245.24(b)(2)(i) needs to be filled out along with documentation of the victim status. In order to obtain a green card Jacques Batiste status needs to change from illegal to legal.
CONCLUSION: If the prosecutors want Jacques Batiste to testify against the suspects in a court case then we could petition them to apply for an “S” Visa in Jacques Batiste name, before he testifies in open court under 8 C.F.R. § 214.2 Special requirements for Admission, Extension, and Maintenance of Status this is done in writing before the case and given the visa after the testimony. In order to be eligible for this type of visa Jacques Batiste must testify in court before he is given the “S” visa. A U-visa can be given to victims of crimes 8 CFR 245.24(b)(2)(i) with the proper form filled out with documentation for verification. After three years with a U-visa he can petition to obtain a green card. Without a legal status a green card for marriage would not lead to a green card.
Tse v. Attorney Gen. of U.S., 197 F. App’x 179 (3d Cir. 2006)
8 C.F.R. § 214.2
8 CFR 245.24(b)(2)(i)