July 25, 2024 #1 Local News, Information and Event Source for the Century City/Westwood areas.

U.S. Ordered to Pay $881,675 to Lawyers of Chinese Refugees

Westside Today latest crime and courts news. Thinkstock
Westside Today latest crime and courts news. Thinkstock

A Los Angeles federal judge ordered the United States government to pay $881,675 in fees to attorneys for two female Chinese refugees who were offered asylum in exchange for sex by an immigration officer 14 years ago, it was announced on May 28.

In her May 27 ruling, U.S. District Judge Consuelo B. Marshall found that the United States acted in “bad faith” throughout the course of litigation dating back to 2000, and should pay attorneys’ fees to Schonbrun DeSimone Seplow Harris Hoffman & Harrison.

The Venice firm filed a fees motion last September under the Equal Access to Justice Act after prevailing at trial with a $1.2 million verdict stemming from civil rights violations suffered by Xue Lu and Jie Hao at the hands of Thomas A. Powell Jr., a former U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service asylum officer.

Lu testified that she came to the United States and applied for asylum because of persecution suffered for violating China’s family planning policy. Hao said she suffered persecution for her Christian religious beliefs and came to United States for a better life.

Both women said they looked to the United States as a place where they would be treated fairly – until Powell contacted them for what he termed a “private” offer, isolating each of them and preying on their vulnerability.

In awarding Lu damages of $500,000 last year, Marshall wrote that the woman was in a vulnerable state when subjected to Powell’s sexual advances and subsequently suffered, among other things, “loss of enjoyment of life, grief, anxiety, humiliation, emotional distress and has signs of PTSD – post-traumatic stress disorder – and physically suffered weight loss, insomnia and avoidance of traumatic reminders.”

Marshall awarded Hao $700,000 in damages, finding that she “suffered loss of enjoyment of life, grief, anxiety, nervousness, worry, humiliation, indignity and emotional distress. This was aggravated by the nearly eight-year delay in adjudicating her asylum application,” the judge wrote.

Powell was convicted of corruption and civil rights charges and sentenced in 2004 to three years and nine months in prison for soliciting sex and money from asylum seekers.

He died in prison shortly afterward.

Related Posts

(Video) The Cheese Store of Beverly Hills’ Celebration of One Year at Its New Location

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

Now at 9705 S Santa Monica, and filled with delectable cheeses, cured meats, fresh bread, and wines of every description,...

LA Times Announces 8th Annual Food Bowl Festival at Paramount Studios

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

Three-Day Event to Feature Over 40 Restaurants and Culinary Demos The Los Angeles Times has announced the details for the...

Go Go Bird and FoodBeast Editor Collaborate on New Chicken Sandwich, “The Reach”

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

Chef Brandon Kida and Reach Guinto Create Nostalgic and Exciting Sandwich Go Go Bird is one of the best fried...

Alfred Coffee Launches New Breakfast Burritos, Bagels, and Baked Goods

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

New Collaborations with WAKE AND LATE and Artissant by Artelice Alfred Coffee has announced the launch of its new breakfast...

USPS Honors Alex Trebek with Forever Stamp on His 84th Birthday at Sony Studios in Culver City

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

Ceremony Video Includes Tributes from Jean Trebek and Ken Jennings On Monday, Alex Trebek would have been 84 years old,...

Surprise Announcement: All Roads Pinseria + Enoteca is Now Open in Brentwood

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

The Grand Opening Celebration is Still Scheduled for Friday, July 26 In a surprise announcement on Monday, July 22, All...

Elon Musk’s Controversial Remarks on Trans Daughter Spark Outrage

July 24, 2024

July 24, 2024

Musk Repeatedly Deadnames His Daughter, Claiming He Was Tricked Elon Musk, in an interview with Jordan Peterson for the website...

Actor Rob Lowe Lists Luxurious Beverly Hills Estate for $6.6 Million

July 23, 2024

July 23, 2024

Mansion is Located in the Prestigious Franklin Canyon Area  Rob Lowe has put his estate in the prestigious Franklin Canyon...

Brentwood Mother Speaks Out After Assault, Raises Concerns Over Suspect’s Release

July 22, 2024

July 22, 2024

Carmina Lu, New Mother Attacked in Broad Daylight, Tells Her Story  I spoke to the victim of the recent sexual...

Kamala Harris Secures Democratic Presidential Nomination with Unprecedented Support

July 22, 2024

July 22, 2024

Over 1,976 State Delegates Pledge Support, Solidifying Harris as the Nominee By Dolores Quintana In one day, Brentwood resident and...

Director Jason Reitman Confirms Plans for Restoration of Westwood’s Village Theater

July 22, 2024

July 22, 2024

The Fox Village and Bruin Theaters Will Close Temporarily for Remodeling By Dolores Quintana In an Instagram Stories post, director...

Queen Priyanka Announces Debut Album ‘Devastatia’ and North American Tour

July 22, 2024

July 22, 2024

An Interview with the Drag Icon and Multi-Disciplinary Performer Drag icon and multi-disciplinary performer Queen Priyanka has announced the release...

(Video) School of Rock Offering Summer Camps for Future Rockstars

July 22, 2024

July 22, 2024

Various Camps Are Offered for Beginners and Experienced Musicians Alike @centurycitywestwoodnews Camps are offered for musicians of various skill levels...

Suspect Killed by Los Angeles County Sheriffs in Shooting in West Hollywood

July 21, 2024

July 21, 2024

Incident on N. Gardner St. Under Investigation by Sheriff’s Homicide Detectives Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Homicide detectives are investigating a...

Ryan Garcia Charged with Allegedly Vandalizing the Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills

July 21, 2024

July 21, 2024

DA Gascón Announces Charges for the Incident on June 8 Boxer Ryan Garcia has been charged with allegedly vandalizing the...