Greg Boos authors Amicus Brief for business organizations in major court challenge to expedited removal of Canadians
The Pacific Corridor Enterprise Council (PACE), the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce, the British Columbia Chamber of Commerce, and the Northwest Economic Council, organizations that advocate for the removal of barriers that impede the legitimate flow of people, goods and services across the U.S./Canadian Border, have jointly filed an Amicus Brief in a case pending before the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Greg Boos, Bellingham immigration attorney, authored the brief, and represents the organizations in the appeal.
The case at bar raises the issue of whether a Canadian citizen seeking entry to the United States can be subject to “expedited removal” by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Currently, Canadians heading to the U.S. for business or tourism purposes face a border regime that empowers border guards, at their own discretion and without avenue for appeal, to bar Canadians entry to the U.S. for periods of five years or more under an “expedited removal” process. The appeal demands more accountability from CBP by highlighting the lack of proper and impartial review in expedited removal cases.
“This draconian regime flies in the face of open borders and Canada’s long-standing friendship and trading relationship with our neighbours to the south,” said John Winter, president and CEO of the BC Chamber of Commerce. “As our countries strive towards new levels of co-operation through the Beyond the Border Action Plan, these harsh border rules need to be fixed.”
Winter added that the border rules pose a particular threat to B.C. businesses.“If an overzealous U.S. border guard targets a B.C. CEO or other key company personnel for expedited removal, that company’s business with the U.S. risks grinding to a halt,” Winter said.
“Allowing CBP to make unreviewable determinations of admissibility into the U.S. invites abuse of discretion,” said Boos. “Immigration courts have been in existence for well over one-half century – they provide the due process of law in inadmissibility matters that is missed when expedited removal is used.”
The 9th Circuit case in which the Amicus Brief has been filed is John Smith v. United States Customs and Border Protection, et al, Case number 11-35556. It was argued on on August 26, 2013. The court is expected to issue a written decision within the next six to nine months.