Thursday, January 02, 2020

O Centro Sues Over Failure To Process Visa Applications

AP reports on a lawsuit filed in a New Mexico federal district court by O Centro Espirita Beneficente União do Vegetal alleging religious discrimination by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services which has failed to process the visa applications for one of its congregational leaders and his family:
The lawsuit comes after José Carlos Garcia, a Brazilian man who has led the church’s Florida congregation since 2013, applied for visas that would allow him and his family to continue living in the United States while their immigration cases are pending
But the federal agencies responsible for processing their applications have left the family in legal limbo. Some applications have been pending for two years, according to the suit.
This has prevented Garcia from traveling to religious meetings outside the United States, infringing on his religious freedom, the lawsuit said.
In  O Centro Espirita Beneficente União do Vegetal in the U.S. v. Wolf, (D NM, Dec. 31, 2019), a New Mexico federal district judge refused to issue a preliminary injunction, but ordered the government to file a response by Jan. 10. (See prior related posting,)