In New York, over twenty percent of residents are foreign-born. Many of them are non-citizens who may be easily subject to detention and deportation for criminal convictions. Immigration crimes face very arduous opposition in Federal Court.
Crimes may involve anyone who facilitate illegal immigration. Even lawful permanent residents may be removed, arrested, or denied naturalization.
Federal criminal charges implicate complex procedures and trials. Understanding the broad immigration consequences of a conviction for a non-U.S. citizen requires a special knowledge and the ability to see and asses the case from many angles.
Immigration crimes usually include illegal entry or re-entry and marriage fraud. The hardest consequences you could face for them, are: denial of naturalization, bar to re-entry, and removal.
If you enter the United States illegally, crossing land or sea borders without authorization by an immigration officer or without a visa issued at a consulate, you commit an EWI, Entry Without Inspection. The law will require you to leave the U.S. and ask for help in a consulate abroad, where you will be assessed for your eligibility to receive a visa.
In addition, pursuant to the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), an individual who is unlawfully present in the United States for more than 180 days but less than one year, will not receive a visa to the United States during a period of three years (Three-year ban).
A person unlawfully present for more than a year, will not get a visa for a period of 10 years (Ten-year ban).
An alien living in the U.S. for more than one year, who is removed or have left the United States and then tries to commit unlawful re-entry, will receive a permanent prohibition of entry (Permanent ban). People sentenced in Federal Courts for unlawfully re-entry, usually receive a two years prison sentence.
Marriage fraud occurs when the marriage is contracted under false pretenses, in order to avoid the immigration laws of the United States. As a matter of fact, immediate relatives of a U.S. citizen, may obtain permanent residency or even the Green Card. Marriage fraud is a federal felony offense that carries serious punishments and immigration consequences. The Immigration Marriage Fraud Amendments Act of 1986 amended section 1325 by adding 1325(c), which provides a penalty of five years imprisonment and a $ 250,000 fine for any “individual who knowingly enters into a marriage for the purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws”. Moreover, the alien may be removed from the United States and he/she will not be allowed to get any future visa or the Green Card .
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is authorized to cancel any citizenship or naturalization certificate in case that it was illegally obtained or created by fraud.
The United States Sentencing Commission (USSC) was established in 1984 to create sentencing guidelines for the Federal Courts and recollecting data on federal criminal cases convicted under the Federal sentencing guidelines.
If you are facing federal charges, it is critical to consult with an experienced criminal attorney as soon as possible. Your criminal defense lawyer has to handle your case properly preventing immigration problems. He/she will be able to achieve the best possible outcome in a given case.