Court Reinstates Mexican Transsexuals Bid for Asylum – By KENNETH OFGANG, Staff Writer

The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals yesterday ordered the Board of Immigration Appeals to reconsider its order that a Mexican transsexual be removed to her native country, where she says she is likely to be physically abused because of her sex change.

The panel said the BIA erred in summarily affirming an immigration judge?s ruling that Nancy Arabillas Morales, who used to be Juan Manuel Arabillas Morales, does not qualify for asylum, withholding of removal, or relief under the Convention Against Torture.

Morales, the judges said, may qualify for relief based on a well-founded fear that she will be attacked because of her trangendered status. Morales testified that such attacks occurred in the past, and the court said the IJ erroneously relied on Morales? admission that her attackers were not associated with the government.