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Rebecca Bamfo, A096 201 703 (BIA June 5, 2014)

Rebecca Bamfo, A096 201 703 (BIA June 5, 2014)

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In this unpublished decision, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) sustained an appeal challenging the revocation of an approved visa petition by USCIS based on allegations that the beneficiary had previously married a U.S. citizen for purposes of evading the immigration laws. The Board found that the evidence in the record did not support the reasons provided in the Notice of Intent to Revoke (NOIR), noting that the burden on the government of proving a marriage was fraudulent is higher than the burden on a petitioner of showing a marriage is bona fide. The decision was written by Member Edward Grant and joined by Member Sharon Hoffman and Member Elise Manuel.

Looking for IRAC’s Index of Unpublished BIA Decisions? Visit www.irac.net/unpublished/index
In this unpublished decision, the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) sustained an appeal challenging the revocation of an approved visa petition by USCIS based on allegations that the beneficiary had previously married a U.S. citizen for purposes of evading the immigration laws. The Board found that the evidence in the record did not support the reasons provided in the Notice of Intent to Revoke (NOIR), noting that the burden on the government of proving a marriage was fraudulent is higher than the burden on a petitioner of showing a marriage is bona fide. The decision was written by Member Edward Grant and joined by Member Sharon Hoffman and Member Elise Manuel.

Looking for IRAC’s Index of Unpublished BIA Decisions? Visit www.irac.net/unpublished/index

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Published by: Immigrant & Refugee Appellate Center, LLC on Jun 11, 2014
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Lichter, Laura L., Esq.

Lichter Immigration
1601 Vine Street
Denver, CO 80206
Name:BAMFO,REBECCA
U.S. Department of Jnstice
Executive Ofce fr Immigration Review
Board of Immigration Appeals
Office of the Clerk
5107 Leesbur
g
Pike, Suite 2000
Fals Church, Vir
g
inia 20530
DHS/CIS - Denver, CO
12484 East Weaver Place
Centennial, CO 80111
A 096-201-703
Date of this notice: 6/5/2014
Enclosed is a copy of the Board's decision and order in the above-referenced case.
Enclosure
Panel Members:
Hoffman, Sharon
Grant, Edward R.
Manuel, Elise
Sincerely,
Oo Ca 
Donna Carr
Chief Clerk
williame
Userteam: Docket
Cite as: Rebecca Bamfo, A096 201 703 (BIA June 5, 2014)
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For more unpublished BIA decisions, visit www.irac.net/unpublished
U.S. Department of Jnstice
Executive Offce fr Immigration Review
Decision of the Board oflmmigration Appeals
Falls Church, Virginia 20530
File: A096 201 703 - Centennial, CO Date:
In re: REBECCA BAMFO, Beneficiary of a visa petition fled by
KWASI BONSU, Petitioner
IN VISA PETITION REVOCATION PROCEEDINGS
APPEAL
ON BEHALF OF PETITIONER: Laura L. Lichter, Esquire
ON BEHALF OF DHS: Cortney V. Price
Associate Counsel
JUN - 5 2014
APPLICATION: Petition to classify status of alien relative fr issuance of immigrant visa
The petitioner has appealed fom the decision of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration
Services (CIS) Field Ofce Director, dated June 20, 2012, revoking approval of the visa petition
submitted on behalf of the beneficiary as the spouse of a United States citizen. CIS revoked the
petition afer concluding that no immigrant petition could be approved on behalf of the
beneficiary, because she had previously sought to be accorded immediate relative status as the
spouse of a United States citizen by reason of a marriage determined to have been entered into
fr the purpose of evading the immigration laws. See section 204( c) of the Immigration and
Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1l54(c). We review questions of law, discretion, judgment, and fact
arising in appeals from decisions
.
ofCIS ofcers de novo. See 8 C.F.R. § 1003.l(d)(3). We will
sustain the appeal and remand the record to the Director.
In order for section 204( c) to bar the approval of the present visa petition submitted on the
beneficiary's behalf, there must be, in .
this record, "substantial and probative" evidence that the
beneficiary's prior maniage to Benjami� Akoto was "entered into fr the purpose of evading the
immigration laws." See section 204(c) of th( Act. Mater ofTawjk, 20 I&N Dec. 166, 168-69
(BIA 1990). The director should not give conclusive effect to determinations made in a prior
proceeding. Rather, the director should reach an independent conclusion based on the evidence
before him. Id. at 168.
CIS's April 18, 2012, Notice of Intent to Revoke (NOIR) based its conclusion that section
204( c) of the Act bars approval of the current petition on the fact that the benefciary and her
prior spouse, Benjamin Akoto, gave "radically different versions regarding their activities on the
evening prior to their separate swor testimony befre an oficer of USCIS." Further, CIS found
that an Immigration Judge questioned the beneficiary regarding the different versions of
Cite as: Rebecca Bamfo, A096 201 703 (BIA June 5, 2014)
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A096 201 703
testimony and she was unable to explain the differences. 1
To the extent that the NOIR refrs to "radically diferent" testimonies during the benefciary
and Mr. Akoto's June 12, 2007, interviews before CIS, we have reviewed the transcript of those
interviews and note that there were no questions presented regarding the activities of the
beneficiary and Mr. Akoto on the night prior to the interview. We futher note that that the
record indicates that the petitioner and the benefciary answered the great majority of the
questions in a consistent manner. Finally, neither the Notice of Intent to Deny the petition fled
by Mr. Akoto on behalf of the beneficiary, nor the denial notice of that petition refrence any
inconsistencies between their testimonies at their June 12, 2007, interviews. Accordingly, there
is no support in the record that the benefciary and Mr. Akoto provided inconsistent testimony
during their June 12, 2007, interviews.
The record also includes the Immigration Judge's November 21, 2008, decision, as well as a
transcript of the removal proceedings befre the Immigration Judge. Before the Immigration
Judge, the benefciary had requested a continuance of her proceedings to await adjudication of an
appeal of the denial of the petition fled by Mr. Akoto on the beneficiary's behalf. The
Immigration Judge denied the continuance, and based such denial, in part, on a determination
that the beneficiary did not establish that the marriage between herself and Mr. Akoto was bona
fide. Specifcally, as refrenced in the November 21, 2008, transcript of the proceedings, the
Immigration Judge separately questioned the benefciary and M. Akoto concering their
activities the night before the November 21, 2008, hearing. While the benefciary testified that
afer she and Mr. Akoto ate dinner, tbey went to bed around 9:00 p.m., Mr. Akoto testified that
• .
' j \ ,;
'
. ..
he worked the night before until I 0:, 30 ;p.m. and that he arrived at home around 11 :00 p.m. and
went to bed afer showering, eating, and watching some television.
To the extent that the beneficiary and Mr. Akoto's testimonies befre the Immigration Judge
frm the basis fr CIS's claim in the April 18, 2012, NOIR that the beneficiary and Mr. Akoto
offered "radically diferent" testimonies regarding their activities prior to the benefciary's
November 21, 2008, hearing before the Immigration Judge, we note that such testimony was not
before an "oficer of USCIS," as alleged in the NOIR. Moreover, while this evidence may not
establish, by clear and convincing evidence, that the beneficiary's prior marriage to Mr. Akoto
was bona fde, such evidence is insufficient fr a finding that the benefciary's prior marriage
was fraudulent, a finding that requires a higher standard of proof than a filure on the
benefciary's part to demonstrate that her prior marriage was bona fde.
In the absence of substantial and probative evidence that the benefciary's marriage to
Benjamin Akoto was faudulent, i.e., that it was entered into fr the purpose of evading the
immigration laws, we will sustain the appeal. See Matter ofTawjik, supra.
Accordingly, the fllowing order will be entered.
1 The benefciary was placed in removal proceedings in 2006, prior to her mmTiage to Mr. Akoto.
She appeared before the Immigration Court in those proceedings and an Immigration Judge
issued a decision on November 21, 2008, ordering her removed to Ghana.
2
Cite as: Rebecca Bamfo, A096 201 703 (BIA June 5, 2014)
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A096 201 703
ORDER: The appeal is sustained and the record is remanded to CIS for further
consideration of the visa petition consistent with the foregoing opinion and for the entry of a new
decision.
3
Cite as: Rebecca Bamfo, A096 201 703 (BIA June 5, 2014)
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