Criminal Defense of Immigrants
§ 21.18 (A)
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(A) Controlled Substances Offense. A conviction for simple possession will generally trigger both inadmissibility and deportability. Admitting to simple possession will also trigger inadmissibility, but not deportability.
A first time simple possession conviction for possession of less than 30 grams of marijuana is excepted from the controlled substances ground of deportation. There is no need to seek a waiver. The same conviction does trigger inadmissibility, but a noncitizen subject to that ground can apply for a waiver under INA § 212(h). This may also apply to simple possession of hashish. See § 21.35, infra.
The Ninth Circuit, and others, have found that a conviction for a nonsubstantive offense other than attempt or conspiracy does not trigger this ground of inadmissibility. If the record does not specify the controlled substance possessed, the noncitizen may be able to avoid deportability, but not inadmissibility.
 INA § 237(a)(2)(B)(i), 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(B)(i) (“. . . other than a single offense involving possession for one’s own use of thirty grams or less of a marijuana.”).
 See § 24.29, infra.
 See § 21.32, infra.
 See § 21.34, infra.
CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES OFFENSES " POSSESSION
Pagayon v. Holder, 642 F.3d 122, 2011 WL 2508239 (9th Cir. Jun. 24, 2011) (per curiam) (California conviction of possession of a controlled substance, under Health & Safety Code 11377(a), constituted a controlled substances conviction, triggering deportation under INA 237(a)(2)(B)(i), 8 U.S.C. 1227(a)(2)(B)(i), where respondents admission in removal proceedings he pleaded to guilty as charged established the drug involved as methamphetamine which was listed in federal drug schedules).