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Domestic Violence Crimes and Immigration

There are few types of offenses and crimes in New York or any state of the Union that carry the same downside in terms of potential sentence and public embarrassment than an arrest for a Domestic Violence crime. Add the potential for deportation of a non-resident upon conviction, shame will be the least of your worries. While New York State does not have a crime called or titled “Domestic Violence” it does have courts specialized in hearing matters involving certain offenses that occur between family members. These domestic relations can include siblings, former lovers, spouses or blood relatives. As such, if you are charged with the misdemeanors of Third Degree Assault pursuant to New York Penal Law 120.00, Criminal Obstruction of Breathing or Blood Circulation pursuant to New York Penal Law 121.11, Fourth Degree Criminal Mischief pursuant to New York Penal Law 145.00 or a felonious version of these or other crimes, and the complainant is a family member, your crime is considered a Domestic Violence offense. In New York, Domestic Violence crimes are on the top of a prosecutor’s case load and carry enhanced scrutiny by the District Attorney’s Office. Because of this, having experienced counsel who can both identify and implement a strong defense may central to the success of both your criminal and potential immigration case.

What is a Domestic Violence Crime for Immigration Purposes: 8 USC 1227

“Any alien who at any time after admission is convicted of a crime of domestic violence, a crime of stalking, or a crime of child abuse, child neglect, or child abandonment is deportable.” (Reread that. It doesn’t get more serious than this). “A ‘crime of domestic violence’ is any crime of violence (as defined in section 16 of title 18) against a person committed by a current or former spouse…an individual with whom the person shares a child in common…an individual who is cohabiting with or has cohabited with the person as a spouse…an individual similarly situated to a spouse of the person under the domestic or family violence laws of the jurisdiction (New York) where the offense occurs…” Additionally, violators of protective orders (orders of protection or restraining orders) can face the same fate upon conviction.

Beyond Arrest: Domestic Violence Convictions and Immigration

As noted above, Domestic Violence arrests in New York are some of the most serious, visible and tracked crimes in each District Attorney’s Office. These cases rarely, if ever, are “one and done” appearances in a criminal court as misdemeanors. If the arrest involves a felony its exacerbated even more. Misdemeanor or felony, if you are convicted of a Domestic Violence crime you can find yourself on the track to deportation. If this fact isn’t concerning enough, the Federal Government and ICE can pursue other grounds for deportation including, for example, an Aggravated Felony or Crime Involving Moral Turpitude (CIMT) if your conviction qualifies as such.

New York Crimes and Convictions: Domestic Violence Offenses

Armed with the understanding of what constitutes domestic or familial for the purpose of the Domestic Violence statute and deportation, the following are some offense that may terminate your legal status in the United States upon conviction. These crimes include:

As with the content of any website, the crimes above are potentially those that would lead to deportation as Domestic Violence offenses upon conviction. By no means is this an exclusive list. What is critical to understand, however, is that many of these crimes are “only” misdemeanors. If your conduct results in a felony conviction, the outlook is even more bleak. Right or wrong, it’s just that simple and just that serious.

Defending Yourself in a Domestic Violence Arrest

As a non-citizen or a born and raised American, there is only one choice you have if you are arrested for a Domestic Violence crime in New York. Defend yourself and do so vigorously when necessary. In lieu of reciting and redrafting the factors in and defenses to Domestic Violence crimes, a review of Saland Law’s Domestic Violence Information page will provide the basic understanding, analysis of court process, potential defenses and a clear landscape to New York Domestic Violence arrests.

Certainly, you do not have to pay any attention to the information provided here or what you learn from your own counsel. You can also let a lie, exaggeration or a fair allegation obliterate your future whether or not you are ultimately deported. Protect yourself today. Fight for your rights inside the courtroom. Put forth your most viable defense to best prevent not only incarceration and a conviction, but deportation. Contact the New York criminal defense lawyers and former Manhattan Assistant District Attorneys at Saland Law and let experience, knowledge and advocacy be your shield and guide.

Call the New York criminal lawyers and former New York City prosecutors at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.

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