Criminal Defense for Non-Citizens
Criminal prosecution can have serious immigration consequences for people who are not U.S. citizens. So you could face immigration problems:
- Deportation (Removal),
- Denial of Naturalization,
- Bar to Re-Entry,
- Other, renewal, upgrade
And therefore your criminal defense lawyer should have experience in the prevention of immigration problems, by managing the criminal case.
Can they deport a Permanent Resident for a conviction?
Yes! So even if you are a Permanent Resident, a criminal charge can result in Removal or Deportation. Do not let this happen to you. The best way to prevent criminal-law related immigration consequences is to avoid the triggering criminal conviction, first.
Attorney Thomas Gallagher has helped his clients avoid deportation for years. Moreover, he has represented many non-citizens facing Minnesota criminal charges, over his 35 years in criminal defense.
And Attorney Thomas Gallagher teaches other lawyers how to avoid immigration law problems by defending the criminal case. For example, he recommends that clients also consult an immigration lawyer. And the immigration lawyer helps Attorney Thomas Gallagher prevent immigration problems by managing the criminal case accordingly.
So the criminal lawyer must have a working knowledge of immigration law and consequences. And he should be able to work with a client’s immigration lawyer as well.
This double approach helps us achieve the best possible outcome.
Call Attorney Thomas Gallagher: 612 333-1500
Two common grounds for Removal due to criminal conviction
When a criminal case triggers an immigration law problem, the worst is “Removal.” Also called “Deportation,” removal from the United States is a severe penalty.
The two most common federal grounds for Removal due to criminal conviction are:
- “Aggravated Felony”
- “Crimes Involving Moral Turpitude”
So, preventing the “conviction” can prevent the immigration consequences. But why the quotation marks around “conviction?” Because some criminal law outcomes that are not “convictions” under Minnesota law. But those same outcomes are “convictions” under federal immigration law. (Example: “Stay of Adjudication.”) And that is only one of many traps for the unwary.
Beware! Some criminal lawyers know little of immigration law. But that’s why you need a criminal lawyer who does know immigration laws, like Attorney Thomas Gallagher.
“Aggravated Felony” Conviction: immigration consequences
You need to know if a criminal charge is an “aggravated felony.” And this is not intuitive. So some federal “aggravated felonies” are:
- not felonies under Minnesota state law, and
- not “aggravated” crimes in any common sense.
And if a charge fits the federal law’s “aggravated felony” definition, then we work to avoid a “conviction” for an “aggravated felony.”
“Crimes Involving Moral Turpitude:” immigration consequences
Next, if a charge does not fit the federal “aggravated felony” definition; is it a “crime of moral turpitude?“
The federal immigration law defines “crimes of moral turpitude.” But the federal statutes and rules are not always clear. So we look to the courts for guidance about which crimes fit the federal “crime of moral turpitude” definition.
And generally, one, single conviction for a “crime involving moral turpitude” does not trigger Removal or Deportation. But just one “conviction” can also cause other negative immigration consequences.
And even one “crime of moral turpitude” conviction can trigger immigration law problems, including denial of a Naturalization (citizenship) application. But two convictions for a “crime of moral turpitude” will trigger Removal or Deportation.
So, avoid the first one. After all, you can’t end up with two, if you avoid the first. Your criminal defense attorney can help avoid it.
Minnesota criminal charges with immigration consequences
- Domestic Assault, misdemeanor or felony
- Federally-defined “aggravated felony”
- “Crimes of Moral Turpitude”
Federal criminal charges > immigration consequences
Not only Minnesota criminal charges can create immigration law problems. Federal court criminal charges can, too. So if you’re facing federal charges, learn all you can about the federal court process.
And begin your defense with a Minnesota Federal Criminal Defense Attorney, right away.
Attorney Thomas Gallagher can help
Minnesota Defense Attorney Thomas Gallagher has represented non-citizen clients from these groups, so far:
- South America