Let Us Fight for You
Criminal Law Experience
Personalized Attention You Deserve
Grace consults with many criminal practitioners during the criminal phase (sometimes as early as the day of the arrest) in order to be several steps ahead of the system so that:
- Criminal counsel already has an idea of what to attack in depositions.
- Criminal counsel already knows the strong and weak parts of the immigration case and can prepare for them.
- A determination can be made as to whether bail should be posted if there is an immigration hold; and The client’s time in jail can be minimized by determining what immigration safe-haven pleas are attainable.
- Grace Gómez can also assist criminal counsel in defending a non-citizen client thoroughly so as to avoid Bar complaints under Padilla and Lozada.
The Immigration Side of Criminal Law
One of the most important differences between immigration and criminal law is that there is often no clearly defined law on when a non-citizen will or will not be deported after a criminal conviction. Since the attacks on September 11th, there have been increasing efforts by the government to “secure our borders.” This equates to two things: tighter security at our ports of entry, and an enhanced communication system between our penal institutions and the Department of Homeland Security/Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
While in the past, non-citizens with prior criminal convictions have been able to travel internationally and continue to maintain their legal status in the U.S., this has changed dramatically. Nowadays, if a non-citizen is charged with a new crime, regardless of whether it is a felony or misdemeanor, conviction could lead to deportation. Moreover, past U.S. and foreign convictions can now lead to detention at ports of entry. Jails and prisons often have an ICE inspector on the premises who will ask your client about his immigration status and possibly even serve him with immigration paperwork while still in custody.