Calderon-Ramirez v. McCament, 120517 FED7, 16-4220

Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Judge Panel:Before Bauer and Hamilton, Circuit Judges, and Darrow, District Judge.
Opinion Judge:BAUER, CIRCUIT JUDGE
Party Name:Ruder M. Calderon-Ramirez, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. James W. McCament, Acting Director, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, and Elaine C. Duke, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, Defendants-Appellees.
Case Date:December 05, 2017
Docket Nº:16-4220
 
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Ruder M. Calderon-Ramirez, Plaintiff-Appellant,

v.

James W. McCament, Acting Director, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, and Elaine C. Duke, Acting Secretary of Homeland Security, Defendants-Appellees.

No. 16-4220

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit

December 5, 2017

          Argued October 23, 2017

         Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division. No. 16 C 8089 - Milton I. Shadur, Judge.

          Before Bauer and Hamilton, Circuit Judges, and Darrow, [*] District Judge.

          BAUER, CIRCUIT JUDGE

         Ruder Calderon-Ramirez, a native and citizen of Guatemala, filed a petition for U Nonimmigrant Status on February 5, 2015. Due to a significant backlog, Ramirez is waiting to be evaluated for the waiting list. On August 15, 2016, he filed a petition for writ of mandamus in the Northern District of Illinois requesting that the district court compel Leon Rodriguez, Director of Homeland Security, and Jeh Johnson, Secretary of Homeland Security, (collectively, "Defendants"), to adjudicate his U-visa petition. Ramirez argues the wait to be placed on the waiting list is unreasonable. The district court granted the Defendants' motion to dismiss. Ramirez now appeals. For the reasons set forth below, we affirm.

         I. BACKGROUND

         In October 2000, Congress created the U-visa through the passage of the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000 ("the Act"), Pub. L. No. 106-386, Div. A, 114 Stat. 1464 (2000), codified at inter alia, 8 U.S.C. § 1101(a)(15)(U). The Act created a new nonimmigrant visa classification that permits immigrants who are victims of serious crimes and who assist law enforcement to apply for and receive a nonimmigrant visa called a U-visa. Id. The U-visa provides legal status to petitioners and qualifying family members to apply for work authorization and remain in the United States. Id. In order to qualify, the Department of Homeland Security must determine that: (1) the petitioner "suffered substantial physical or mental abuse as a result of having been a victim of criminal activity "; (2) the petitioner "possesses information concerning [the] criminal activity"; (3) the petitioner has been, is, or is likely to be helpful to government officials regarding the criminal activity; and, ...

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