Mayer Brown successfully secured a grant of political asylum for Ms. X, a pro bono client. Ms. X was a Pakistani citizen who had studied in the United States in high school as part of an international exchange program. Upon her return to Pakistan, she advocated for greater freedom and equality for Pakistani women, with a particular focus on educational opportunities. In response, the Taliban and local community members threatened her and demanded that she stop trying to change the community’s culture and religion. The threats against Ms. X escalated quickly, and she was eventually shot at while driving to classes at her local university. Though she sought help and security from the local police, she received none, as the Taliban wields powerful influence over her community in Pakistan. Following her near-fatal encounter, she fled her community and eventually filed for asylum in the United States. After years of representation, Mayer Brown successfully helped her secure asylum status in the United States.

In connection with the National Immigrant Justice Center, Chicago Litigation and Dispute Resolution associate Benjamin Shoemaker represented Ms. X in her asylum proceedings with supervision by Pro Bono Advisor Marc Kadish.