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Ala Elddin Rustom v. U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service

filed: April 14, 1992.

ALA ELDDIN RUSTOM, PETITIONER,
v.
U.S. IMMIGRATION AND NATURALIZATION SERVICE, RESPONDENT.



Petition to Review a Decision of the Immigration and Naturalization Service. D.C. No. A20-532-314.

Before: Pregerson, D.w. Nelson and Thompson, Circuit Judges.

MEMORANDUM

Ala Elddin Rustom petitions for review of a final decision by the Board of Immigration Appeals ("BIA") denying him relief from deportation under section 212(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. See 8 U.S.C. § 1182(c).*fn1 He argues that both the immigration Judge and the BIA failed to adequately consider evidence of his rehabilitation and instead improperly focused on his lack of remorse. We have jurisdiction under 8 U.S.C. § 1105a and deny the petition.

"We review the BIA's balancing of the equities for section 212(c) relief for an abuse of discretion." Ayala-Chavez v. INS, 944 F.2d 638, 642 (9th Cir. 1991). We will reverse the BIA's decision "only if the Board failed to support its Conclusions with a reasoned explanation based upon legitimate concerns." Vargas v. Dep't of Immigration and Naturalization, 831 F.2d 906, 908 (9th Cir. 1987).

In its decision, the BIA thoroughly discussed each of the factors relevant in determining whether section 212(c) relief is appropriate.*fn2 It expressly considered a number of factors favorable to Rustom, including the fact that he had no had any trouble with the law since his release from prison in December 1988.

The BIA concluded, however, that these factors did not warrant granting Rustom relief from deporation. In support of this decision, the BIA specifically noted that Rustom had failed to: (1) make any specific effort at rehabilitation, (2) indicate any remorse for his arson conviction, (3) establish any substantial work record or strong ties to the community, or (4) show that his family would suffer financial hardship if he was deported.

Rustom argues that both the immigration Judge and the BIA overemphasized his lack of remorse and ignored other evidence of his rehabilitation. We find no merit to this argument. The BIA fully considered Rustom's claim of rehabilitation and the fact that he had not had any trouble with the law since his release from prison. It concluded, however, that the equitable factors in his favor were insufficient to warrant relief under section 212(c) when evaluated and balanced against his serious prior criminal history and lack of remorse.*fn3

We conclude that the BIA did not abuse its discretion in denying Rustom's request for a waiver of deportation under section 212(c).

Rustom's petition for review is DENIED.

Disposition

DENIE ...


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