A Manatt team successfully secured asylum for a single mother from Mexico, prevailing in a hearing before the Santa Ana Immigration Court.
The asylum seeker—referred to as P.G.A.—fled her home country after a lifetime of persecution at the hands of a powerful and dangerous Mexican criminal organization, which killed her brothers, tortured her and her sisters and threatened P.G.A.’s life, as well as the lives of her children.
P.G.A. and her three-year-old son were placed in removal proceedings shortly after entering the United States in 2021. The Manatt team—with the help of Human Rights First, who referred P.G.A. to the Firm and had assisted her in timely filing her initial pro se asylum application—demonstrated that she was eligible for asylum based on her testimony and the testimony of multiple experts establishing that she could not safely return to Mexico given that she had publicly spoken out about the Mexican government’s failures in stopping the criminal organization.
In securing asylum, P.G.A. no longer needs to worry about her young family being split up by deportation (her older children are United States citizens) or that she would be forced to return to Mexico, where she and her children would be in great danger of being kidnapped and murdered by members of the same criminal organization that killed two of her brothers and kidnapped her sister and mother.
The Manatt team included Partner Bruce Zisser and Associate Michael Nordon, along with help from the Firm’s Pro Bono team, including Pro Bono Manager Gisella Soto (who provided invaluable language assistance), Attorney Alexandra McCown, and Partner and Director of Pro Bono Sirena Castillo.