News & Announcements

Weil Secures Asylum for Burkina Faso Native Escaping Persecution

The immigration judge granted our client’s application for asylum, finding that he was persecuted by the Burkinabe government due to his political opinions and activities, and had a well-founded fear of future persecution if forced to return to Burkina Faso.

A Weil team represented a young man from Burkina Faso who fled to the United States on a student visa after being persecuted by the government due to his political opinions. Our client was an active member and leader of a well-known student organization that protested against government corruption and in support of human rights. After participating in a protest in support of a fellow student who had been beaten and killed by the police, our client was detained and tortured by the police for multiple days. Our client suffered severe physical and psychological harm as a result of this abuse. The police also threatened to kill our client if he continued to protest against the government. After additional confrontations with the police, our client fled to the United States in 2013.

Our client was interviewed by an asylum officer in November 2014, at which time his application was not granted and was referred to an immigration judge for adjudication in removal proceedings. After the City Bar Justice Center referred the case to Weil, the Weil team prepared the client’s comprehensive filing in support of his application for asylum. This filing included, among other things, a supporting brief, several detailed affidavits from the client, his family, friends and doctors, and dozens of articles evidencing the human rights abuses occurring in Burkina Faso and the danger our client would face if he was forced to return.

Associates Heather Novison Weaver and Dori Cohen recently represented our client at his individual hearing. The immigration judge granted our client’s application for asylum, finding that he was persecuted by the Burkinabe government due to his political opinions and activities, and had a well-founded fear of future persecution if he was forced to return to Burkina Faso.

Our client is extremely grateful for Weil’s support, and is thrilled to finally obtain his lawful permanent resident status in a country where he feels safe.

Key members of the Weil team included partner Theodore Tsekerides, associates Heather Novison Weaver, Tracy Gelles, Dori Cohen and Kelvin Goode, and paralegals Roy Gilchrist, Winfield Hahn and Greer Harrison.

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