Farrell v. Tillerson
Farrell v. Tillerson, US District Court, District of Columbia, Civil Action No. 17-490 (RBW)
Plaintiff is contesting Bern Embassy’s rejection of his CLN application due to his not having appeared in person at the embassy and his having been issued a passport after the relinquishing act
Plaintiff is contesting the rejection of his CLN application. He applied for it, alleging he had relinquished his citizenship in 2004 by naturalising in a foreign country with the intention to relinquish his US citizenship.
Defendant (Department of State) rejected his CLN application on the basis that he had not appeared in person – he did it by sending a letter, along with a DS-4079 and DS-4081, to the US Embassy in Switzerland – and that a passport had been issued to him in 2013.
A little background: Plaintiff did not apply for the passport. The US government applied for it in order as part of extradition proceedings on a charge of child sexual exploitation. He was convicted of that charge, so he could not appear in person at a diplomatic post to apply for the CLN.
The Defendant (Department of State) filed a Motion to Dismiss, contending that the case did not meet the requirement for judicial review because they (DoS) had not taken “final agency action.” That means basically a final decision, as a final decision by a department is required in order for a plaintiff to seek judicial review.
The Judge dismissed Defendant’s motion and agreed with Plaintiff’s that final agency action had been taken.
The Plaintiff is raising other points in case, including the allegation that DoS has exceeded statutory jurisdiction by requiring an in-person appearance at a diplomatic post in order to apply for a CLN.
You can view the case docket at this link. (It lists the documents as they are filed, but unfortunately to see the documents you have a subscription.)
Thanks to Phyllis Henderson for alerting us to this case. She wrote in a comment on the Renunciation Questions Thread:
“Not relevant to purpleflower’s question, but interesting: it turns out there has been a recent case in which (if I understand correctly), a Swiss citizen who was born in the US got extradited to the US – on a US passport which was obtained in his name without his consent, not by him but by the US – solely so that they could take him back to the US and imprison him in America.
Subsequently the prisoner wrote to the Swiss Embassy to apply for a CLN on the basis that when he naturalised he intended to lose US citizenship, and believed that he had lost citizenship, and had never acted as an American since naturalising. Now he wanted a CLN, so that he would become deportable and thus be able to leave America. But the Embassy refused – on the grounds that he couldn’t apply for a CLN while he was in America. Catch-22.
But maybe not. Looks like he might eventually get his CLN, as the court has rejected the Embassy’s motion to dismiss.
US renunciation law is a mess.”
It hasn’t been finally settled yet”
That’s an interesting case.
One did not need a cln in the past to prove loss of citizenship , an expatriating act with no American activity post act was said to be enough to prove intent. It was only when banks demanded cln’s that people sought to register a relinquishment.
I wonder what his extradition was for? Tax evasion is not an extraditable offense in Switzerland.
“I wonder what his extradition was for?”
Not for tax.
The aspect that’s interesting to me is the fact that the court didn’t swallow the consular officer’s arguments trying to justify the refusal on the grounds that the prisoner didn’t sign the 4079 in the presence of consular staff.
Good to know that the courts still retain some integrity Lets hope that’s the case with the ADCS trial.
Re: “I wonder what his extradition was for?”
Child sexual exploitation. https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices/saltlakecity/news/press-releases/former-eagle-resident-sentenced-to-96-months-in-prison-for-child-sexual-exploitation-offenses
Yes, just googled him and found his history. He fled the US for Switzerland in 2004 but was found in Spain in 2013 and arrested and extradited . How did he become a Swiss citizen , you need 12 yrs residence for Swiss citizenship?
….Unless of course he was married to a Swiss citizen, then he would need 5 yrs residence .
If Mr Farrell was wanted for a crime had lied on his application for Swiss citizenship by omitting this fact, then I suspect his Swiss citizenship would be invalidated.
” However, he alleges that he “moved to Switzerland
in . . . 1994,” “married a Swiss citizen in 1996,” and “obtain[ed] naturalization in
Switzerland” in 2004. Am. Compl. at 5. In 2014, the plaintiff pleaded guilty in the United
States to federal criminal charges and was sentenced to a ninety-six-month prison term.”
Now, why would a US born man who fled the US while facing criminal charges want Swiss citzenship practically after touching ground in Switzerland and more interestingly why would he want to wave a CLN around five years after pleading guilty to a criminal charge ?