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Civil Rights Action Arising out of Traffic Accident, and Civil Rights, Copyright, Criminal, and Immigration Matters

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By FindLaw Staff on June 04, 2010 2:51 PM

Hernandez v. Holder, No. 08-2455, concerned a petition for rehearing of the Eighth Circuit's prior decision holding that the court lacked jurisdiction to review petitioner's challenge to BIA's denial of his request for continuance.  The Eighth Circuit denied the petition, holding that 1) because an Immigration Judge's discretion to deny a request for a continuance arose from a regulation, 8 C.F.R. section 1003.29, the court possessed jurisdiction to consider the denial of petitioner's motion for continuance under Kucana; but 2) there was no abuse of discretion in the BIA's determination that petitioner had not met the good cause-standard where, in light of the uncertainty as to when the long-pending repapering regulation would be promulgated, he was essentially seeking an indefinite continuance.

In US v. Mashek, No. 09-2058, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's conviction and sentence for attempting to manufacture methamphetamine, on the grounds that 1) the district court's findings of facts were not clearly erroneous and its determination that the affidavit in support of the search warrant at issue established probable cause for the issuance of the warrant was well-supported by the record; 2) the admission of certain pseudoephedrine logs did not violate defendant's constitutional confrontation rights; 3) defendant did not demonstrate a reasonable probability that but for a challenged instruction the result of the proceeding would have been different; and 4) the district court's determination that defendant committed perjury was not clearly erroneous.

Sitzes v. City of W. Memphis, No. 09-2090, involved an action alleging constitutional and state tort claims arising out of a traffic accident in which a police patrol car struck the car driven by plaintiffs' decedent.  The court of appeals affirmed summary judgment for defendant, on the ground that the intent-to-harm standard applied as a matter of law to the officer's conduct, and there was no evidence that the officer intended to harm the plaintiffs' decedent.

In US v. Bryant, No. 09-2532, the court of appeals affirmed defendant's mail fraud conviction and sentence, on the grounds that 1) defendant's misrepresentations influenced the intended victim, and were therefore material; 2) the district court recognized its authority to depart downward from defendant's Guidelines sentence; 3) there was no indication in the record that the district court relied upon defendant's socio-economic status during sentencing; and 4) the purpose of the Mandatory Victim Restitution Act was to restore the injured party, not to benefit the wrongdoer.

Thomsen v. Famous Dave's of Am., Inc., No. 09-2555, concerned an action alleging copyright infringement and breach of contract arising out of defendants' alleged misappropriation of plaintiff's restaurant designs.  The court of appeals affirmed summary judgment for defendants, on the ground that plaintiff unambiguously conveyed all contested copyrights to defendants by written contract.

Fesehaye v. Holder, No. 09-2799, involved a petition for review of the BIA's denial of petitioner's application for asylum, withholding of removal and protection under the Convention against Torture.  The court of appeals denied the petition, on the grounds that 1) even if the cumulation of petitioner's explanations could plausibly account for the significant inconsistencies in her asylum applications, the Immigration Judge (IJ) did not err by rejecting them; 2) the IJ gave an adequate explanation for the adverse credibility determination, that the determination was supported by substantial evidence, and that a reasonable adjudicator would not be compelled to reach a contrary conclusion.

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