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Dang v. Sessions

United States District Court, D. Minnesota

September 21, 2017

Tuan Anh Dang, Petitioner,
v.
Jefferson Sessions, Scott Benieke, Mike Stasko, and Elaine Duke,[1] Respondents.

          ORDER AND REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION

          STEVEN E. RAU, UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE.

         The above-captioned case comes before the undersigned on Tuan Anh Dang's (“Dang”) Petition for a Writ of Habeas Corpus (the “Petition”) under 28 U.S.C. § 2241 [Doc. No. 1]. In his Petition, Dang seeks release from custody, an injunction, and attorney's fees. This matter has been referred for a Report and Recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B)-(C) and District of Minnesota Local Rule 72.1. For the reasons stated below, the Court recommends denying the Petition as moot, and dismissing the action.

         I. BACKGROUND

         Dang filed his Petition on June 20, 2017. As of that date, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) had been unable to remove him to Vietnam (his home country) or any other country. (Pet. ¶ 15). Dang seeks release, an injunction, and attorney's fees. (Id. at 7).

         In their response, Respondents assert that this Court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over the Petition because Dang was released on July 26, 2017, subject to certain conditions. See (Resp. to Pet., “Resp.”) [Doc. No. 6 at 1]; see also (Ex. 1, Attached to Decl.) [Doc. No. 7-1].[2] No reply to the Response was filed. See (Order Dated July 10, 2017) [Doc. No. 5].

         II. DISCUSSION

         A. Legal Standard

         An alien who has been ordered removed must be removed within ninety days, the “removal period, ” subject to certain exceptions. 8 U.S.C. § 1231(a)(1)(A). An alien who is considered inadmissible based on his or her criminal convictions “may be detained beyond the removal period, and, if released, shall be subject to the terms of supervision in [§ 1231(a)(3)].” Id. § 1231(a)(6). The United States Supreme Court held that § 1231(a)(6) contains “an implicit ‘reasonable time' limitation, the application of which is subject to federal-court review.” Zadvydas v. Davis, 533 U.S. 678, 682 (2001). In Zadvydas, the Supreme Court held that an alien may only be kept in custody for six months subject to a final removal order unless there is a significant likelihood of removal in the reasonably foreseeable future. Id. at 701; see also Bah v. Cangemi, 489 F.Supp.2d 905, 916 (D. Minn. 2007) (Schiltz, J.).

         Dang's release implicates this Court's subject matter jurisdiction. See (Resp. at 1-2). “Article III of the United States Constitution limits the jurisdiction of the federal courts to actual, ongoing cases and controversies.” Ali v. Cangemi, 419 F.3d 722, 723 (8th Cir. 2005) (en banc) (internal quotation marks omitted).[3] “This case-or-controversy requirement subsists through all stages of federal judicial proceedings, trial and appellate . . . . The parties must continue to have a personal stake in the outcome of the lawsuit.” Spencer v. Kemna, 523 U.S. 1, 7 (1998) (omission in original) (internal quotation marks omitted). In other words, “throughout the litigation, the plaintiff must have suffered, or be threatened with, an actual injury traceable to the defendant and likely to be redressed by a favorable judicial decision.” Id. (internal quotation marks omitted). “When, during the course of litigation, the issues presented in a case lose their life because of . . . a change in circumstances . . . and a federal court can no longer grant effective relief, the case is considered moot.” Ali, 419 F.3d at 723 (second omission in original) (internal quotation marks omitted). When a case is moot under Article III, it must be dismissed for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction. Id. at 724.

         Nonetheless, Dang's release does not automatically render his Petition moot. See Spencer, 523 U.S. at 7; Ali, 419 F.3d at 724. Whether Dang's Petition is moot “depends on potentially applicable exceptions to the mootness doctrine.” Sayonkon v. Beniecke, No. 12-cv-27 (MJD/JJK), 2012 WL 1621149, at *2 (D. Minn. Apr. 17, 2012) (Keyes, Mag. J.), adopted by 2012 WL 1622545 (May 9, 2012) (Davis, C.J.). A petition

should not be dismissed as moot if: “(1) secondary or ‘collateral' injuries survive after resolution of the primary injury; (2) the issue is deemed a wrong capable of repetition yet evading review; (3) the defendant voluntarily ceases an allegedly illegal practice but is free to resume it at any time; or (4) it is a properly certified class action suit.”

Id. (quoting Riley v. I.N.S., 310 F.3d 1253, 1257 (10th Cir. 2002)).

         B. Analysis

         1. ...


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