Real Estate associate Kieran Murphy recently helped a Salvadoran woman and her son who were victims of prolonged domestic and gang-related violence obtain a grant of asylum in the United States, with no possibility of appeal.
The woman, Ms. B., fled El Salvador with her son as she feared further persecution or death at the hands of her husband, an gang leader, and his fellow gang members. El Salvador possesses one of the highest rates of femicide in the world. Gang-related violence, particularly targeting women, regularly goes unreported and unpunished. Ms. B. was a victim of severe domestic abuse and gang violence, and often received death threats from her husband and other members of his gang. Mr. Murphy worked directly with the client to gather details of her story and to prepare the legal brief arguing that Ms. B. should be granted asylum on account of her well-founded fear of future persecution.
At the hearing in Baltimore Immigration Court, the judge ruled from the bench in favor of Ms. B. This outcome was particularly gratifying in a “difficult climate” for these types of asylum cases in the US, Mr. Murphy commented. He added that “the client was very happy with the result and is on the path to citizenship.”
Pro Bono Counsel Tony Cassino noted that, as a member of the Real Estate Group, “Kieran is proof that Milbank lawyers are not afraid to get out of their comfort zone to help a client.”
In addition to Mr. Murphy, the pro bono team included Milbank associate Julianne Guzman, as well as partner Erwin Dweck and special counsel Craig Price. In addition, Jeronimo Ramos Arozarena of the International Attorney Program was instrumental in assisting with translation services throughout the process.