Criminal Defense of Immigrants


§ 1.5 2. What is Not Included

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It is not possible to list or discuss all criminal offenses, or relevant criminal or post-conviction procedures, given that there are 50 states, plus several other U.S.-governed jurisdictions, such as Puerto Rico, and in addition the federal criminal courts and the nearly 200 foreign nations in which criminal “convictions” may be rendered that might trigger deportation or other immigration consequences under United States immigration law.


                Because about 95% of all criminal cases result in pleas of guilty or no contest, this volume focuses on negotiating dispositions in criminal court that will not trigger adverse immigration consequences, rather than on criminal trial.


                Part II here offers a summary of the crime-related aspects of immigration law, procedure, and relief from adverse immigration consequences of criminal cases.  There are excellent existing works devoted to the details of immigration law and procedure, in particular the many types of relief that may be available in immigration court.  Chief among them is C. Gordon, S. Mailman, & S. Yale-Loehr, Immigration Law and Procedure (Matthew Bender, 2007), the monumental, all-inclusive work. 


                Perhaps the best companion volume to this one is N. Tooby & J. Rollin, Safe Havens: How to Identify and Construct Non-Deportable Convictions (2005).  The core meaning of “safe haven” is as follows: A safe haven is a disposition in a criminal case that will not trigger deportation under any ground of deportation.  Safe Havens covers the identification and construction of dispositions of criminal cases in criminal courts that do not fall within any ground of deportation.  It offers tools counsel can use to make sure a given disposition or conviction does not establish a ground of inadmissibility.  It also covers “partial safe havens,” which do not cause deportation under one ground or another, even though they may trigger deportation under a separate ground.  Thus, criminal and immigration counsel can use Criminal Defense of Immigrants as a general guide to the relationship between criminal and immigration proceedings, and Safe Havens as a guide to identifying and constructing specific non-deportable convictions.


                For those interested in more depth of coverage on certain topics included here, counsel can consider:


N. Tooby & J. Rollin, Aggravated Felonies (2006).  The current volume contains nearly 240 pages on this subject; the Aggravated Felony book is more detailed, containing about 700 pages, including two large appendices gathering all published federal and BIA aggravated felony decisions. 


N. Tooby, J. Rollin, & J. Foster, Crimes of Moral Turpitude (2005).  The current volume contains nearly 60 pages on this subject; the book devoted to this subject contains over 300 pages, including the CMT chart of federal and BIA moral turpitude decisions.


N. Tooby, Post-Conviction Relief for Immigrants (2004).  The current volume contains about 175 pages on this subject; the book devoted to it contains about 600 pages.