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Immigration Violations

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More and more now the federal government is cracking down on illegal immigration — people who are coming over the wall near the borders, people who already in the county and then getting caught, either pulled over by the police, caught in one of the local jails, caught at one of the prison — are being deported back to their country.  But a lot of times, before they get deported they’re being charged at the federal level in the federal district where their illegal immigration is taking place.

So, if you or a loved on is being charged with a federal immigration offense, obviously you’re going to want to get a criminal defense attorney to help you because there’s a lot of things that the feds can do that are punishment-oriented that can really affect you — not only your freedom, but your criminal record and your ability to ever get back into the country again.

A lot of people just take the position, well I just want to be deported and I’ll never come back again.  But the feds don’t do that.  If they charge you with a federal criminal offense, they’re first going to get a conviction on your record and then they’re going to try to punish you.  A lot of times that punishment is through custody.  So, they’ll hold you in custody for a period of time if you get convicted through a jury trial for example, or if you work out a deal through a plea agreement and then the Judge sentences you to an amount of time in federal custody and then they deport you back to your home country.

Really what they’re trying to is (1) punish you; (2) deter you from coming back in the country again for fear that you will be charged again with an illegal immigration federal criminal offense and given even more federal time in custody, and they’re trying to set things up, in my opinion, a lot of times so you can never get back in the country again because you’re getting these convictions for illegally coming in and therefore, if you ever do try to seek asylum, naturalization, try to get your green card and eventually become a citizen, you’re blocked from doing so by these felony federal immigration criminal charges on your criminal record that you can’t get off.

8 U.S.C. § 1325 : US Code – Section 1325: Improper entry by alien

a) Improper time or place; avoidance of examination or inspection;
misrepresentation and concealment of facts
Any alien who

(1) enters or attempts to enter the United States at any time or place other than as designated by immigration officers, or
(2) eludes examination or inspection by immigration officers, or
(3) attempts to enter or obtains entry to the United States by a willfully false or misleading representation or the willful concealment of a material fact, shall, for the first
commission of any such offense, be fined under title 18 or imprisoned not more than 6 months, or both, and, for a subsequent commission of any such offense, be fined under title 18, or
imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both.

(b) Improper time or place; civil penalties Any alien who is apprehended while entering (or attempting to enter) the United States at a time or place other than as designated by immigration officers shall be subject to a civil penalty of –

(1) at least $50 and not more than $250 for each such entry (or attempted entry); or
(2) twice the amount specified in paragraph (1) in the case of an alien who has been previously subject to a civil penalty under this subsection.Civil penalties under this subsection are in addition to, and not in lieu of, any criminal or other civil penalties that may be imposed.

(c) Marriage fraud Any individual who knowingly enters into a marriage for the purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws shall be imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or fined not more than $250,000, or both.

(d) Immigration-related entrepreneurship fraud Any individual who knowingly establishes a commercial enterprise for the purpose of evading any provision of the immigration laws shall be imprisoned for not more than 5 years, fined in accordance with title 18, or both.

Avoiding a Conviction

So, you definitely want to get an attorney who understands how the feds work; who understands what it takes to get a conviction for an immigration offense and what it takes to avoid going into custody for a long period of time.  What I have you do if you’re out of custody, we sit down and we talk with your family and go over everything related to the case.  If you’re in custody, I will visit you wherever you’re in custody.  We’ll talk about what the circumstances are, obviously get your version of events as to what happened and then I will speak to the prosecutor and then ultimately the Judge in a federal sentencing and try to get you out of custody as fast as possible, preserve whatever rights I can related to your immigration status.  We will also consult an immigration attorney because they’re going to want to weigh-in on it.

In my experience, the immigration laws and the prosecution of them ad how they deal with them are ever changing; meaning they are ever being altered and things are really in a state of flux where it’s very difficult to really know how the immigration authorities, how the judges are going to deal with somebody who is in their immigration custody and wants to come into the United States, but has certain convictions and certain offenses.

The people that really see investigating these crimes is the Homeland Security.  They are in charge of enforcing our immigration laws and now the way the political climate is related to illegal immigration, you have to be very careful because they’re much more on the ball.  They’re much more harsh when it comes to punishing people who are entering our country illegally.  It really is a trickle-down effect.  If the top authority, the President of the United States, the Congress are against illegal immigration and are on the warpath about it, obviously those people who are getting caught illegally entering the country are going to suffer the consequences.

Immigration violations can be hectic and stressful. You need a skilled and aggressive federal criminal defense attorney to be on your side and to fight on your behalf. So, if you or a loved one has a federal immigration case, is looking at criminal sanctions, pick up the phone now.  Let’s talk.  Let’s see what I can do to help you salvage your rights, protect your freedom, protect your liberty and get you out of the federal criminal defense system as fast as possible.