Criminal Defense of Immigrants


§ 22.27 c. Against a Person

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This deportation ground requires that the offense must have been convicted “against a person . . . .”[127]  The more general definition of “crime of violence” contained in 18 U.S.C. § 16, however, applies to use or threatened use of physical force “against the person or property of another . . . .”[128]  The domestic violence deportation ground makes it clear that only a conviction of a crime of domestic violence committed “against a person” is sufficient to trigger deportation under this ground.  Even if the statute were ambiguous on this point, the statute must be construed in favor of the noncitizen.  See § 16.38, supra.


                Therefore, convictions of offenses such as vandalism, property destruction, and other property offenses cannot be considered to trigger deportation under this ground, even though they may meet the more general definition of a “crime of violence” contained in 18 U.S.C. § 16.

[127] INA § 237(a)(2)(E)(i), 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(E)(i) (emphasis supplied).

[128] 18 U.S.C. § § 16(a), (b) (emphasis supplied) (the same phrase is contained in both subdivisions).