In a published decision, the Eighth Circuit rejected the proposed social group of “Guatemalan repatriates who have lived and worked in the United States for many years and are perceived to be wealthy,” deeming it to be insufficiently particularized because because it turns on whether an individual is perceived as being wealthy.  The Court noted that the petitioner presented no evidence “that wealthy Guatemalans were recognized as a group that is at a greater risk of crime in general or of extortion or robbery in particular.”  

Though disappointing, the decision still leaves open the possibility that proof that wealthy Guatemalans are a higher risk of crime may persuade the Court to reconsider the cognizability of this social group.

The full text of Cinto-Velasquez v. Lynch can be found here: