Philip L. Torrey

Lecturer on Law

2016-2017

Biography

Phil Torrey is the Managing Attorney of the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program, a Lecturer on Law, and the Supervising Attorney for the Harvard Immigration Project. At HLS, he supervises the Crimmigration Clinic and he teaches a course concerning the intersection of criminal law and immigration law. The Crimmigration Clinic provides advice to criminal defense attorneys around the country concerning the immigration consequences of criminal charges, as well as state and federal appellate litigation support, and policy advocacy. His research focuses on the crime-based grounds of removal and immigration detention, including the private prison industry, and the immigration system’s mandatory detention regime.  Prior to joining HLS, Torrey worked as an attorney in the Immigration Unit of Greater Boston Legal Services and as a litigation associate at the law firm Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. He received his B.A. from Colgate University and his J.D. with honors from the University of Connecticut School of Law.

Areas of Interest

Philip L. Torrey, Laura Murray-Tjan & Sarah R. Sherman-Stokes, Immigration Consequences of Massachusetts Sex Offenses, in Trying Sex Offense Cases in Massachusetts (2015 Supp.) ch. 19 (Hon. Jennifer L. Ginsburg ed., Mass. Continuing Legal Educ. 2015).
Categories:
Discrimination & Civil Rights
Sub-Categories:
Gender & Sexuality
,
Immigration Law
Type: Book
Philip L. Torrey, Immigration Detention’s Unfounded Bed Mandate, 15-04 Immigr. Briefings 1 (2015).
Categories:
Discrimination & Civil Rights
Sub-Categories:
Immigration Law
Type: Article
Abstract
This article (1) reviews the history of the immigration bed mandate (or bed quota) from 2009 to present, (2) discusses its inconsistent interpretation by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, and (3) offers reasons why the bed mandate is both constitutionally questionable and bad policy.
Philip L. Torrey, Rethinking Immigration’s Mandatory Detention Regime: Politics, Profit and the Meaning of "Custody", 48 U. Mich. J.L. Ref. 879 (2015).
Categories:
Discrimination & Civil Rights
Sub-Categories:
Immigration Law
Type: Article
Abstract
Immigration detention in the United States is a crisis that needs immediate attention. U.S. immigration detention facilities hold a staggering number of persons. Widely believed to have the largest immigration detention population in the world, the United States detained approximately 478,000 foreign nationals in Fiscal Year 2012. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the agency responsible for immigration enforcement, boasts that the figure is “an all-time high.” In some ways, these numbers are unsurprising, considering that the United States incarcerates approximately one in every one hundred adults within its borders—a rate five to ten times higher than any other Westernized country. An immigration law, known as the mandatory detention statute, is partially to blame for this recordbreaking immigration detention population. Under this law, facilities may hold noncitizens without providing them an opportunity to ask for release.
Philip L.Torrey, The Erosion of Judicial Discretion in Crime-Based Removal Proceedings, 14-02 Immigr. Briefings 1 (2014).
Categories:
Criminal Law & Procedure
,
Government & Politics
,
Discrimination & Civil Rights
Sub-Categories:
Immigration Law
,
Judges & Jurisprudence
Type: Article
Abstract
This article discusses how Congress has eliminated, or at least severely curtailed, judicial discretion in the context of crime-based removal proceedings. By way of illustration, this article focuses on the legislative and judicial histories of two discretionary forms of relief: (1) the Judicial Recommendation Against Deportation (JRAD); and (2) the waiver of deportation pursuant to section 212(c) of the INA.

Bar Admissions

Education History

Current Courses

Course Catalog View

Clinic Work

In addition to teaching a clinical course concerning the intersection of criminal law and immigration law, Phil supervises students in the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinic who are working on asylum applications, VAWA petitions, and other forms of immigration protection on behalf of their clients.  Phil is also the Supervising Attorney for the Harvard Immigration Project, which is a student practice organization involved in, among other things, representing individuals applying for Lawful Permanent Resident status and representing individuals seeking release on bond from immigration custody.