Argued: September 17, 2014.
On Petition for Review of an Order of the Board of Immigration Appeals.
Tamara L. Jezic, LAW OFFICE OF IVAN YACUB, Woodbridge, Virginia, for Petitioner.
Lindsay M. Murphy, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, D.C., for Respondent.
Ivan Yacub, LAW OFFICE OF IVAN YACUB, Falls Church, Virginia, for Petitioner.
Stuart F. Delery, Assistant Attorney General, Civil Division, Song Park, Senior Litigation Counsel, Office of Immigration Litigation, UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, Washington, D.C., for Respondent.
Before NIEMEYER, DUNCAN, and THACKER, Circuit Judges. Judge Thacker wrote the majority opinion, in which Judge Duncan joined. Judge Niemeyer wrote a dissenting opinion.
THACKER, Circuit Judge:
An alien who wishes to apply for cancellation of removal must show, among other things, that he has continuously resided in the United States for seven years after admission to this country. See 8 U.S.C. § 1229b(a)(2). However, a statutory provision known as the stop-time rule provides that the commission of a criminal offense can cut short the alien's period of continuous residence. See id. § 1229b(d)(1)(B). In the case before us, the Board of Immigration Appeals (" BIA" ) has deemed Petitioner Abdul Azim Jaghoori (" Petitioner" ) ineligible for cancellation of removal because of a crime he committed within his first seven years of residence in the United States. Petitioner argues the BIA should not have applied the stop-time rule in his case because the offense and guilty plea occurred before Congress promulgated the stop-time rule.
The inquiry into a statute's retroactive effect is " informed and guided by 'familiar considerations of fair notice, reasonable reliance, and settled expectations.'" INS v. St. Cyr,533 U.S. 289, 321, 121 S.Ct. 2271, 150 L.Ed.2d 347 (2001) (quoting Martin v. Hadix,527 U.S. 343, 358, 119 S.Ct. 1998, 144 L.Ed.2d 347 (1999)) (internal quotation marks omitted). These considerations militate against retroactivity here. Accordingly, we apply our " 'traditional presumption' against retroactivity," Olatunji v. Ashcroft,387 F.3d 383, 393 (4th Cir. 2004) (citation omitted) (quoting ...