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Boateng v. Lynch

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

May 30, 2017

KWAME AMO BOATENG, Petitioner
v.
LORETTA E. LYNCH, et al., Respondents

          MEMORANDUM

          William J. Nealon United States District Judge

         Petitioner, Kwame Amo Boateng, a detainee of the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”), filed the instant counseled petition for writ of habeas corpus pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §2241. He challenges his continued detention by ICE. (Doc. 1, petition). A response (Doc. 4) and traverse (Doc. 6) having been filed, the petition is ripe for review. For the reasons set forth below, the petition will be denied without prejudice.

         I. Background

         On November 10, 2006, Petitioner, a native and citizen of Ghana, entered the United States in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as a Lawful Permanent Resident with an “IR2" status (which means, child of a U.S. citizen). (Doc. 7-2 at 3-6, Record of Deportable/Inadmissible Alien).

         On November 28, 2012, Boateng was arrested by the Newberry Township Police Department in York, Pennsylvania for “unlawful use of a computer and other computer crimes, identity theft, access device fraud, theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property.” Id. On May 1, 2014, Boateng “entered a plea of guilty and was convicted for receiving stolen property;” however, “all other charges were dismissed.” Id. Boateng was sentenced to three-hundred sixty-four (364) days in prison. Id.

         On December 1, 2012, Boateng was arrested again by the Newberry Township Police Department for “unlawful use of a computer and other computer crimes, identity theft, access device fraud, theft by unlawful taking and receiving stolen property.” Id. On May 1, 2014, Boateng “entered a plea of guilty and was convicted for receiving stolen property;” however, “all other charges were dismissed.” Id. For this crime, Boateng also received a sentence of three-hundred sixty-four (364) days in prison. Id. The crimes which Boateng committed on November 28, 2012 and December 1, 2012 “did not arise out of a single scheme of criminal misconduct.” (Doc. 7-2 at 7-9, Notice to Appear).

         Boateng was encountered on March 24, 2015 “while conducting routine CAP [Criminal Alien Program] operations at the York County Prison.” (Doc. 7-2 at 3-6, Record of Deportable/Inadmissible Alien).

         On or about August 15, 2015, Boateng was taken into ICE custody. (Doc. 7-2 at 10, Declaration of David Stein, Deportation Officer).

         On August 17, 2015, immigration officials issued a Notice to Appear charging Boateng to be removable from the United States pursuant to Sections 237(a)(2)(A)(ii) of the Immigration and Nationality Act because Boateng had been “convicted of two crimes involving moral turpitude” that did not arise out of a “single scheme of criminal misconduct.” (Doc. 7-2 at 7-9, Notice to Appear).

         On January 14, 2016, an immigration judge ordered Boateng to be removed from the United States to Ghana. (Doc. 7-2 at 12, Order of the Immigration Judge). Boateng waived his right to appeal that decision. Id.

         On January 22, 2016, a travel document request was uploaded into eTD[1] and sent to the Ghanaian consulate in New York City. (Doc. 7-2 at 10, Declaration of David Stein, Deportation Officer at ¶ 4.2).

         On January 27, 2016, the Ghanaian consulate responded stating: 1) Boateng is on the list for the next round of interviews; 2) the consulate only conducts interviews on the last Friday of the month; and 3) the next date for interviews had not yet been set. Id. at ¶ 5.

         On February 12, 2016, Headquarters (HQ) reported that the consulate is still working on the interviews. Id. ICE contacted the Ghanaian consulate four times inquiring about the issuance of a travel document for Boateng between March 8, 2016, and March 26, 2016. Id. at ¶ 7. No one at the Ghanaian consulate answered any of these calls between March 8, 2016, and March 26, 2016; therefore, a message was left each time a call was made. Id.

         On March 28, 2016, the local Office of Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) spoke with Headquarters and was advised that Headquarters personnel had been in discussion with the ...


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