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Court rejects sex bias claim on citizenship rule

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Supreme Court has dismissed a challenge by a Mexican-born man to a citizenship law that treats men and women differently.

The court voted 4-4 Monday, an outcome that upholds the criminal conviction against Ruben Flores-Villar on immigration charges. The tie vote resolves Flores-Villar’s case, but sets no national precedent. Justice Elena Kagan did not take part because she worked on the case when she was solicitor feneral.

Flores-Villar, 36, was born in Tijuana to an American father and Mexican mother. If his parents’ nationalities were reversed, Flores-Villar would be a citizen. American mothers need only to have lived in the United States continuously for a year before the birth of a child. It’s longer for a citizen father.