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A municipal court judge’s legal status in the U.S. is throwing her rulings into question, raising the possibility of legal challenges by dozens, if not hundreds of affected parties as officials in Corpus Christi, Texas learned she is not a citizen.

U.S. citizenship is a requirement for the position of municipal court judge and Judge Young Min Burkett, who was born in Seoul, Korea, does not meet that important requirement.

According to Mayor Pro-Tem Lucy Rubio, the city placed Burkett on unpaid leave after learning of the violation and provided her 90 days to complete the process of becoming a citizenship.

The mayor told local media that no one had inquired about her citizenships status at the time she was hired, although the Department of Homeland Security Employment Eligibility Verification form, I-9, requires a positive statement signed under penalty of perjury, asserting that the applicant is a citizen, noncitizen national, a lawful permanent resident or an alien authorized to work in the U.S.

Corpus Christi officials said that although Burkett didn’t appear to have actively attempted to deceive anyone about her status, they are unable to verify how she completed the DHS form truthfully or who in the hiring process verified the information on the required form.

Corpus Christi Mayor-Elect Joe McComb is taking a “move on” approach to the problem, telling local media that it was simply a paperwork error. “Did the City make a mistake in not asking the right question? I don’t think there was any intention by anybody, City or applicant, and so, you make a mistake, you admit it, and you move on and that’s what we’re doing.”

And although the mayor says city attorneys believe “Judge” Burkett’s rulings are valid and lawful, a local attorney says the revelation, “could prove problematic when it comes to challenging those rulings.”

“Someone can come back and say, ‘You know what? I’m going to say I don’t agree with her decision, and I’m going to challenge it,’ and they have every right to challenge it.”

While this may be great news to those who came out on the “wrong” side of Burkett’s rulings, the bigger problem is the seeming willingness to give the benefit of doubt to any foreign-born person in the U.S. rather than be forever branded a “racist” by daring to ask the questions required of everyone else.

Paperwork error? Uh, we don't think so...

Do you think this Korean non-citizen judge deserves to be fired and deported for not disclosing she is not a U.S. citizen?

Tell us how you feel about this miscarriage of justice in the comments below.

Source: USA Today

 

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