§ 23.1 I. Summary for Criminal Defense Attorneys
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A conviction for an offense that includes, as an element, possession, use, or trafficking of a firearm or destructive device will often be considered an aggravated felony. The tests (similar to aggravated felony drug trafficking) are (1) whether the conviction involves trafficking of certain listed firearms, or whether the offense was, or could have been, prosecuted under certain federal statutes.
Convictions that include, as an element, possession, use, or trafficking of a firearm or destructive device will also trigger deportation under the broader firearms ground of deportation. However, a firearms conviction will not trigger inadmissibility unless the offense is also considered a crime of moral turpitude or otherwise falls within another non-firearm ground of inadmissibility. This may have a significant effect on whether a noncitizen is eligible for relief.
Criminal counsel must be very careful when dealing with non-firearms offenses that were committed with a firearm (e.g., assault with a firearm, drug-trafficking while armed, etc.). Depending how the offense is prosecuted, and whether any enhancements of the offense or sentence are imposed because of the use of a firearm, an otherwise non-firearm offense may become deportable as a firearms offense.
Outside the immigration context, a firearms offense can also trigger a serious sentence enhancement upon prosecution of illegal re-entry, and both federal and state laws punish possession of a firearm by certain noncitizens.
 See § 19.56, supra.
 See § 19.69, supra.
 See § 19.70, supra.
 INA § 237(a)(2)(C), 8 U.S.C. § 1227(a)(2)(C). See § § 23.8-23.18, infra.
 See § § 23.19-23.21, infra.
 See § 23.5, infra.
 See § § 23.4, 23.10, infra.
 See § 23.7, infra.
 See § 23.6, infra.
FIREARMS - FALSE STATEMENTS TO OBTAIN FIREARM
Dulal-Whiteway v. US Dep't of Homeland Sec., 501 F.3d 116 (2d Cir. Sept. 19, 2007) (federal conviction for violation of 18 U.S.C. 922(a)(6), false statement in order to obtain a firearm, is divisible with respect to whether the conviction constitutes a firearms offense under immigration law, since the statute also punishes making a false statement in order to obtain ammunition; the record of conviction here showed the conviction was for false statement in order to obtain a firearm, and the conviction therefore constitutes a deportable firearms offense).