During his presidency, Donald Trump has begun cracking down on immigrants nationwide. This includes those in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Undocumented immigrants can face serious consequences if caught violating immigration laws, and especially if they are facing criminal acts. The consequences include being deported or removed to their home country.
There are many grounds for deportation, one including being charged with a criminal conviction.
What Is a Conviction?
According to immigration law, a conviction can have a more broad definition than its traditional meaning. A conviction for an immigrant is more than the court finding you guilty of a crime.
If you have admitted guilt in any way when facing a criminal charge, you have a conviction. This can go for misdemeanors and felonies.
If you answer yes to any of the following questions, you have a conviction on your record:
- Has a judge or jury found me guilty?
- Has a judge imposed a sentence for a crime?
- Did I admit to the guilt of the crime?
- Did I admit to facts that sufficiently support a judge’s finding of guilt?
- Did I enter a guilty plea for a crime?
- Have I ever expunged a crime from my record?
Depending on the offense you answered yes to, you could face deportation. Consult with an attorney when figuring out if you have convictions on your record that cause grounds for deportation. Some of these outcomes could be tricky to figure out on your own.
Grounds For Deportation
In Baton Rouge, immigration can only deport you for certain criminal convictions. The main convictions include:
Aggravated felonies are the most serious crimes in immigration law even if they are not serious in criminal law. This is not the same as an aggravated assault because immigration law has its definition.
Aggravated felonies include the following:
- Drug trafficking
- Money laundering over $10,000
- Trafficking in firearms or explosives
- A crime of violence with a 1-year sentence or more
- Theft with a 1-year sentence or more
- Crimes involving ransom
- Rape or sexual abuse of a minor
- Child pornography
- Gambling with a 1-year sentence or more
- Racketeering with a 1-year sentence or more
- Engaging in prostitution or slavery business
- Fraud worth over $10,000
- Illegal entry or reentry after deportation based on an aggravated felony
- Document afraid with a 1-year sentence or more
- Commercial bribery
- Obstruction of justice
Only a few of these crimes have defenses to deportation.
Any drug conviction can lead to deportation. This is unless the conviction is for simple possession for your use of 30 grams or less of marijuana.
You can also be deported for drug abuse or being a drug addict. You do not have to have a conviction to be deported on these bases. For some drug crimes, you may still have a defense to deportation.
A Crime of Moral Turpitude
Grounds for deportation can happen for one crime of moral turpitude if the crime was committed within five years of admission into the US. This is one of the major reasons for deportation because the sentence or time served doesn’t matter. You can be removed for two crimes of moral turpitude unless they were in a single scheme of criminal misconduct.
The immigration law has no clear definition of crimes of moral turpitude, but the courts have defined it. The crimes usually include theft, murder, voluntary manslaughter, and vile crimes such as rape or other sexual crimes.
If immigration tries to remove you for a crime of moral turpitude, find a lawyer that can help you figure out whether the crime is actually of moral turpitude. You could have a defense to deportation.
Certain firearm convictions can have you deported. For example, unlawful possession of a gun could be a reason for deportation.
You could have a defense to deportation under these circumstances.
A Crime of Domestic Violence
You can be deported for a conviction of domestic violence. These crimes include stalking, child abuse, child neglect, child abandonment, or for violation of a protection order.
It is possible you could have a defense for a crime of domestic violence.
Other Criminal Activity
Other criminal convictions could put you at risk for grounds for deportation. These include espionage, sabotage, or treason.
These criminal activities also include activities relating to national security and terrorism.
Deportation After Felony Conviction
If you have been deported from one or more of these felony convictions, you must wait either 5 or 10 years before returning to the United States legally. The years depend on the case. If you are deported a second time, you have to wait 20 years.
Immigration may permit you to re-enter the country sooner, but it is rare. In some cases, you may never be able to return to the states, such as deportation for an aggravated felony.
Green Card Felony Deportation
Deporting criminals is what immigration does. This includes those who have a green card. Those who have a green card and have been charged with a criminal offense should consult with a lawyer immediately.
When found violating criminal law, cardholders can face deportation. Criminal offenses may affect your chances of renewing your green card. Not all criminal offenses have grounds for deportation.
Stay Above the Law
The biggest reasons for deportation include criminal activity. In Baton Rouge, these things may constitute grounds for deportation. As an undocumented immigrant or even someone with a green card, it is important to stay above the law.
For more information on deportation, contact a criminal defense attorney in Baton Rouge.