Deported for a DUI or DWI ???

Green card holders who are arrested for alcohol offenses while driving an automobile have greater exposure to deportation than US citizens.

The greatest exposure to green card holders is getting deported.

Legislation was introduced a decade ago for the purpose of deporting repeat criminal defendants who were green card holders or who were illegal immigrants.

Members of the United States Congress, both senators and congresspersons, were told by lobbyists paid by private prison owners that the proposed legislation, which was initiated by owners of private prisons, would target for deportation those green card holders and illegal immigrants for deportation who had committed the worst of criminal offenses.

Before an individual is deported he/she is detained and placed in a private prison. The private prison contracts with the United States Government to provide lockdown prison cells for defendants who are waiting to be deported. The owners of the private prisons receive a fee for each overnight in which the green card holder or illegal immigrant spends the night. Often because the green cardholders or illegal immigrants receive constitutional guarantees such as due process of law, attorney assistance, and related services to protect the defendant in the deportation process, it takes a long time to be processed. Often it takes several months or longer for the detained defendant/ green card holder or illegal immigrant to complete the deportation process.

The owners of private prisons desired to increase their revenue by providing many more green card holders and illegal immigrants with lockdown detention and at the expense of the US Government. Therefore, owners of private prisons hired lobbyists to approach members of Congress to create laws that would increase the number of deportees.

Members of Congress were told that proposed legislation would remove undesirable green card holders and illegal immigrants who had committed serious crimes. Members of Congress considered this legislation to be worthwhile in that it would remove serious criminals and, especially, those who committed felonies.

Here are examples of individuals who had committed crimes but were not felons or had not committed serious crimes. A 36-year-old woman had been stopped by police for speeding. She was born in Germany. Her deceased father was in the military at the time of her birth and married her mother while stationed in Germany. The woman's mother also was deceased. The 36-year-old woman never sought citizenship, in part because of her father's lack of effort in registering her as a citizen through his citizenship. When the police stopped the 36-year-old woman's vehicle, the officer ran a warrant check and was informed that there was a warrant out for her arrest for failure to appear for a shoplifting charge some 18 years before. The defendant, because of her failure to appear, was determined by the criminal court to be guilty of shoplifting and of failing to appear before the court. She was sentenced to 18 months in prison.

Another example is of an individual who ran a successful business and was from another country. He entered the United States illegally and never obtained a green card. The business owner had married, had children in this country, and, for the most part, followed the law. Approximately 20 years ago, he was in a bar and was charged with criminal assault. He had gone to court, was found guilty and was placed on probation but never followed the conditions of his probation which included counseling, community service, and weekly appearance before a probation agent. His probation agent reported to the court that he violated the terms of his probation and a warrant was issued for his arrest. Approximately 15 years after the date of the trial, he was in an automobile accident that we might call a ‘’fender bender.’’ The police went to the scene of the accident, ran a warrant check, and determined that there was an outstanding warrant for his arrest because he did not complete the conditions of his probation.

The above two examples involve misdemeanors which usually have minimal penalties, fines, and jail time. However, the laws that were enacted that were supposed to deport serious felons did not operate as they were intended. The problem arose when the immigration department had to establish policies and procedures as to who should be deported. When the immigration officials surveyed crimes throughout the United States, those officials began to recognize that the definition of a felony and/or misdemeanor was different from state to state. Therefore, the immigration officials utilized as one of the criteria for deportation whether or not the defendant (a holder of a green card or an illegal immigrant) was under the jurisdiction of the courts for a year and one day. Let's assume that a green card holder is found guilty but in Maryland is granted probation before judgment. The probation period is for 15 months. That period of probation exceeds one year and one day. According to the criteria established by the immigration officials, that defendant would be notified that he or she is to be deported.

If you employ our office to represent you for your alcohol-related offense, you will find that we are familiar with your exposure and have proven methods to deal with green card holders or illegal immigrants. Utilization of the tools and techniques proven to be effective in our past experiences has resulted in our clients not being deported in the cases in which we represented them. This is not a guarantee that we will always be successful, however you may want to consider our past experience in selecting our office to represent you for your DUI or DWI charge.

Call our office for a free initial consultation. Contact us at 410 730 4404