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Decisions in Case Involving Deadly Passenger Plane Crash, Plus Immigration and Criminal Matters

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By FindLaw Staff on May 17, 2010 3:41 PM

Gatimi v. Holder, No. 08-3197, concerned a plaintiffs' suit for attorneys' fees and costs under the Equal Access to Justice Act, arising from a reversal of the BIA's denial of the Kenyan couple and their daughter's application for asylum and related relief.  In denying the request, the court held that the government's position was substantially justified as a whole, and the request for an award of costs was untimely.   

Pettitt v. Boeing Co., No. 09-3204, concerned plaintiffs' wrongful death suit arising out of an accident when a Boeing 737 aircraft crashed shortly after take-off in Cameroon, killing all 114 people on board.  In vacating the district court's order remanding the case, sua sponte, on the ground that removal had been defective, the court held that the district court lacked statutory power to enter a remand order, and even if the district court were correct that a defect in removal had occurred, this is merely a procedural defect which was waived.   

In US v. Maiden, No. 09-3747, the court faced a challenge to the district court's application of a two-level bodily injury enhancement to defendant's sentence, convicted of bank robbery and carrying a firearm during a crime of violence.  Here, the judge applied the enhancement based on the bank teller's testimony that they suffered injuries when defendant sprayed them pepper spray, and this is sufficient evidence to determine that defendant inflicted bodily injury during the commission of his crime and the court properly applied the two-point enhancement. 

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