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Case Name Asgari v. Trump [voluntarily dismissed] IM-MA-0008
Docket / Court 1:17-cv-10182 ( D. Mass. )
State/Territory Massachusetts
Case Type(s) Immigration
Presidential Authority
Special Collection Civil Rights Challenges to Trump Refugee/Visa Order
Case Summary
On Feb. 1, 2017, a J-1 visa holder filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, after being prevented from boarding a flight from Frankfurt to Boston on both Jan. 28. and Jan. 30, 2017. Represented by Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, the plaintiff is Iranian-born and ... read more >
On Feb. 1, 2017, a J-1 visa holder filed this lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, after being prevented from boarding a flight from Frankfurt to Boston on both Jan. 28. and Jan. 30, 2017. Represented by Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, the plaintiff is Iranian-born and lives in Switzerland; she was traveling to Boston to commence work at Brigham & Woman's hospital as a researcher and expert on state-of-the-art genetic sequencing technologies focusing on pediatric susceptibility to infection.

The complaint alleged that on Jan. 28, 2017, a gate operator at the Frankfurt airport, who introduced himself as a representative from the consulate of the United States, told the plaintiff that she was ineligible to board a flight to the United States pursuant to an executive order issued by President Donald Trump on Jan. 27, 2017 (suspending entry into the United States of nationals of Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen). The complaint further alleged that when the plaintiff returned to the Frankfort airport on Jan. 31, with a copy of the Jan. 29 Temporary Restraining Order issued in Louhghalem/Tootkaboni v. Trump providing immediate protection to "holders of valid immigrant and non-immigrant visas ... who, absent the Executive Order, would be legally authorized to enter the United States," the plaintiff was once again prevented from boarding her flight to Boston, despite being subject to the TRO's protection as a valid J-1 visa holder.

The plaintiff claimed that her continued bar to entry based solely on the Executive Order, which was enforced against her contrary to nationwide federal court stays, stood in violation of the defendants' duties owed to the plaintiff and to all persons similarly protected by the TRO. The complaint was filed as a civil complaint seeking declaratory and injunctive relief.

This case was assigned on Feb. 2 to Judge Allison D. Burroughs and to Magistrate Judge Jennifer C. Boal, should the trial Judge refer the matter.

Also on Feb. 2, the plaintiff filed an emergency motion seeking a Temporary Restraining Order enabling the plaintiff's counsel to determine the defendants' compliance or non-compliance with the Jan. 29 TRO, as well as requesting an emergency hearing before the court. That same day, the requested emergency hearing was set for Feb. 6, 2017. On Feb. 3, the plaintiff requested that the aforementioned emergency hearing be cancelled, as she was able to to travel to the United States and clear customs. Judge Burroughs declared the motion moot on Feb. 8.

On Mar. 6, prompted by adverse developments in the Washington v. Trump litigation, in the Ninth Circuit, the President rescinded the January 27 Executive Order and replaced it with a narrower one, Executive Order 13780.

In light of the revised Executive Order, the parties on Mar. 31 jointly requested that the court stay the proceedings and postpone the defendants' deadline to answer, for sixty days until Jun. 5, 2017. This would allow the parties enough time to monitor ongoing litigation before deciding how to proceed. Judge Burroughs on Mar. 31 granted this request for a stay.

On May 31, plaintiff filed a notice of voluntary dismissal without prejudice, mentioning the Fourth Circuit's injunction of the revised Executive Order in IRAP v. Trump. The court closed the case on June 1.

This case is now closed.

Julie Aust - 02/06/2017
Virginia Weeks - 02/08/2017
Ava Morgenstern - 06/13/2017


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Constitutional Clause
Due Process
Discrimination-basis
National origin discrimination
General
Terrorism/Post 9-11 issues
Immigration
Admission - criteria
Admission - procedure
Visas - criteria
Visas - procedures
Plaintiff Type
Private Plaintiff
Causes of Action Mandamus, 28 U.S.C. § 1361
Defendant(s) United States
Plaintiff Description An Iranian-born and Switzerland-based scientist, granted a J-1 visa, but denied entry following the January 27, 2017 Executive Order. The successfully plaintiff entered the US on February 3, 2017, and cancelled a scheduled emergency hearing for mandamus but proceeded with a civil suit.
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party None Yet / None
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief None
Source of Relief Settlement
Form of Settlement Voluntary Dismissal
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Links Implementing Executive Order 13780 Following Supreme Court Ruling -- Guidance to Visa-Adjudicating Posts
Reuters
Written: Jun. 28, 2017
By: U.S. Department of State
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Presidential Memorandum for the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the Director of National Intelligence
The White House
Written: Jun. 14, 2017
By: Donald Trump (White House)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Executive Order Protecting The Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States
Written: Mar. 06, 2017
By: President Donald Trump (President of the United States)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Memorandum to the Acting Secretary of State, the Acting Attorney General, and the Secretary of Homeland Security
The White House
Written: Feb. 01, 2017
By: Donald F. McGahn II, Counsel to the President (The White House)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Statement by Acting Attorney General Sally Yates
https://www.nytimes.com/
Written: Jan. 30, 2017
By: Acting Attorney General Sally Yates (Department of Justice)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Statement By Secretary John Kelly on the Entry of Lawful Permanent Residents into the United States
https://www.dhs.gov/
Written: Jan. 29, 2017
By: DHS Secretary John Kelly (Department of Homeland Security)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  OLC Memo Re: Proposed Executive Order Entitled "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States"
Written: Jan. 27, 2017
By: Curtis Gannon (U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Legal Counsel)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

  Executive Order: Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States
Federal Register
Written: Jan. 27, 2017
By: President Donald Trump (Office of the President)
[ Detail ] [ PDF ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
1:17-cv-10182 (D. Mass.)
IM-MA-0008-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/31/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Complaint [ECF# 1]
IM-MA-0008-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/01/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiff's Emergency Motion Seeking a Temporary Restraining Order and Hearing Before the Court [ECF# 5]
IM-MA-0008-0002.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/02/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Plaintiff's Notice Regarding Cancellation of Emergency Hearing [ECF# 11]
IM-MA-0008-0003.pdf | Detail
Date: 02/03/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Joint Motion for Entry of a Stay and for Temporary Suspension of the Defendants' Deadline to Answer, Move, or Otherwise Respond to the Complaint [ECF# 13]
IM-MA-0008-0008.pdf | Detail
Date: 03/31/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Notice of Voluntary Dismissal Without Prejudice [ECF# 15]
IM-MA-0008-0009.pdf | Detail
Date: 05/31/2017
Source: PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
Judges Burroughs, Allison Dale Court not on record
IM-MA-0008-9000
Plaintiff's Lawyers Bruhn, Nathaniel P. (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0008-0001 | IM-MA-0008-0002 | IM-MA-0008-0008 | IM-MA-0008-0009 | IM-MA-0008-9000
Frost-Davies, Julia (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0008-0002 | IM-MA-0008-0008 | IM-MA-0008-0009
Kaufman, Noah J. (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0008-0001 | IM-MA-0008-0002 | IM-MA-0008-0003 | IM-MA-0008-0008 | IM-MA-0008-0009 | IM-MA-0008-9000
Scott, Thane D. (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0008-0002 | IM-MA-0008-0008 | IM-MA-0008-0009
Willett, Peter Sabin (Massachusetts)
IM-MA-0008-0001 | IM-MA-0008-0002 | IM-MA-0008-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Nazarov, Ari (District of Columbia)
IM-MA-0008-0008 | IM-MA-0008-9000

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