604 F.2d 1236 (9th Cir. 1979), 78-3347, Garcia-Jaramillo v. Immigration and Naturalization Service

Docket Nº:78-3347.
Citation:604 F.2d 1236
Party Name:Rodolfo GARCIA-JARAMILLO, Petitioner, v. IMMIGRATION AND NATURALIZATION SERVICE, Respondent.
Case Date:September 24, 1979
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Page 1236

604 F.2d 1236 (9th Cir. 1979)

Rodolfo GARCIA-JARAMILLO, Petitioner,

v.

IMMIGRATION AND NATURALIZATION SERVICE, Respondent.

No. 78-3347.

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

September 24, 1979

Page 1237

Frederick L. Hetter, II (argued), San Diego, Cal., for petitioner.

Margaret J. Perry, Atty., Dept. of Justice, Washington, D. C., for respondent.

PETITION TO REVIEW A DECISION OF THE U.S. IMMIGRATION & NATURALIZATION SERVICE.

Before CHOY and TANG, Circuit Judges and RENFREW, [*] District Judge.

TANG, Circuit Judge:

Garcia-Jaramillo ("Garcia") seeks review of a BIA decision finding him deportable as an alien excludable at the time of entry, 8 U.S.C. § 1251(a). The BIA affirmed the decision of the immigration judge who found Garcia excludable for (1) wilfully withholding critical information concerning his purported marriage to an American citizen (8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(19)); (2) procuring an invalid immediate relative visa by means of a sham marriage (8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(20)) and (3) entering without a valid labor certificate (8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(14)). On appeal Garcia alleges that the evidence was insufficient to prove a sham marriage; that testimony by his former wife contained privileged communications; and that he was denied a fair and impartial hearing.

Page 1238

FACTS

On March 27, 1973, Garcia, a native and citizen of Mexico, married a native and citizen of the United States. They separated on August 1, 1973, never having resided as man and wife. Garcia was granted an immigrant visa on August 3, 1973 and classified a spouse of a U.S. citizen. The parties were divorced February 26, 1976. On May 17, 1977, after a hearing, an immigration judge ordered Garcia deported on the grounds that his marriage was a sham from its inception and entered into solely for immigration purposes.

DISCUSSION

(1) Sufficiency of Evidence of a Sham Marriage

Initially, Garcia urges that it is irrelevant whether his marriage was a sham since he and his wife freely entered into a valid, legal marriage in Las Cruces, New Mexico. The argument is frivolous. It is within the authority of the INS to make inquiry into the marriage to the extent necessary to determine if it was entered for the purpose of evading the immigration laws. Bark v. INS, 511 F.2d 1200 (9th Cir. 1975). A marriage is a sham "if the bride and groom did not intend to establish a life together At the time they were married." Id. at 1201. Conduct and lifestyle before and after marriage is relevant to the extent it aids in determining the intent of the parties at the time they were married. Id.

In determining the sufficiency of the evidence, judicial review is limited to whether the findings of the immigration judge are supported by " reasonable, substantial and probative evidence." Whetstone v. INS, 561 F.2d 1303, 1306 (9th Cir. 1977); 8 U.S.C. § 1105a(a)(4); See also Woodby v. INS, 385 U.S. 276, 282, 87 S.Ct. 483, 17 L.Ed.2d 362 (1966).

Here, there was substantial evidence that the marriage was a sham. Garcia's former wife testified that Garcia approached her three months before marriage and offered to pay her $200.00 to marry him and help arrange for a resident passport. He told her they would not have to live together and he would later get a divorce. She testified he gave her approximately $150.00 and that she lived with her roommate both before and after her marriage. The testimony of the...

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