Attorney Susham M. Modi was quoted in La Voz de Houston, Houston Chronicle's weekly Spanish language newspaper on August 24, 2014.
The article, written by Alvaro Ortiz, is titled, "The Difficulties of Asylum Applications." The article explains the complexity of applying for asylum and emphasizes the importance of hiring a reputable attorney. As an example of the difficulty, the article discusses the recent surge in unaccompanied alien children as a result of gang violence in Central American countries.
Generally, for asylum, an individual must fear to return to their home country because of persecution by the government or a group that the government cannot or will not control. This persecution must be on account of the individual's race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or being a member of a "particular social group." Many advocates for asylum seekers have tried to argue that young men that resist recruitment by violent Central American gangs belong to a "particular social group". Many of these young men are threatened, physically harmed or killed by the same gangs they refused to be a part of.
Attorney Modi is quoted, "There are some adverse decisions from the Board of Immigration Appeals that say that the simple fact that [gangs] have tried to recruit you does not mean that you belong to a particular social group." Each case, however, must be decided on an individualized consideration and due to the potential difficulty in these cases, it is important to hire a reputable immigration attorney familiar with U.S. asylum law.