7th Circuit Court of Appeals
Case Name: Ulanbek Kadyr Uulu v. Merrick B. Garland
Case No.: 22-1973
Officials: Rovner, Kirsch, and Jackson-Akiwumi, Circuit Judges.
Focus: Immigration- Asylum Request
Uulu, residing in Kyrgyzstan with his wife and children, became affiliated with an opposition party. In 2013, he participated in a peaceful protest that took a violent turn when the police deployed tear gas and assaulted the demonstrators. Subsequently, Uulu was taken to a police station where he endured physical abuse, including being struck with a bottle and having cellophane placed over his head, resulting in his loss of consciousness. Uulu recounted being detained for several hours in a room with a chemical substance that left him feeling disoriented. The following morning, he was returned to the station. Upon returning home, Uulu was brutally attacked by unidentified assailants until he lost consciousness, only to awaken in a hospital.
Two months later, he entered the United States on a tourist visa. Uulu claimed that he was subsequently convicted in absentia by the Kyrgyz government on charges of “organizing mass riots.” An asylum officer deemed him removable under 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(1)(B). In 2018, an immigration court conducted a hearing in which Uulu provided testimony and presented supporting documents. The presiding judge ordered Uulu’s voluntary departure, citing inconsistencies in Uulu’s statements regarding critical events in his asylum application, interviews, and hearing testimony. These inconsistencies included matters related to the extent of harm inflicted by the police, the duration of his detention, and the details of the attack. Furthermore, the corroborating statements provided by Uulu were sourced from interested parties who could not be subjected to cross-examination. The Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) affirmed the decision, and the Seventh Circuit Court declined to review Uulu’s petition, expressing reservations about the credibility of his account due to the numerous discrepancies it contained.