News & Announcements

Weil Secures Asylum for Transgender Woman Fleeing Persecution in Colombia

In a case referred to Weil by Immigration Equality, associates Charles Driscoll, Jay Minga and Melissa Rutman, supervised by partner Adam Hemlock, secured asylum for a Colombian pro bono client on the grounds that she suffered past persecution as a transgender woman and had a well-founded fear of future persecution if required to return to Colombia.

Our client fled Colombia in 2016 after witnessing and being threatened with violence on numerous occasions for being transgender or perceived as gay. The Weil team prepared and submitted the client’s application for asylum, which included a detailed personal declaration from the client, supporting affidavits and dozens of reports obtained on the threats that transgender people face in Colombia. Charles Driscoll and Melissa Rutman accompanied and represented the client in her asylum interview.

Our client has expressed gratitude at being able to live in the United States where she can express her true identity openly and build a life free from the fear and persecution that she faced in Colombia. Since obtaining asylum, Weil has further assisted the client with changing her name to reflect her female identity in the New York Courts.

Immigration Equality is an LGBTQ immigrant rights organization providing advice and legal services to thousands of LGBTQ and HIV-positive immigrants seeking refuge, fair treatment and freedom in the United States. In over 80 countries, it is a crime or fundamentally unsafe to be LGBTQ, with consequences up to and including the death penalty.