Our office handles federal criminal cases relating to immigration matters. The cases are commonly based upon charges of making false statements in applications for immigration benefits in violation of 18 U.S.C. §1001(a) and 18 U.S.C. §1546; marriage fraud in violation of 8 U.S.C. §1325(c) ; and illegal re-entry after removal in violation of 8 U.S.C. §1326.
As with any criminal matter brought before a US District Court, all defendants charged with any offense are entitled to have the representation of an attorney and the effective representation of an attorney in these proceedings. The most common charge brought before US District Courts across the entire US relate to the illegal entry of a foreign national into the United States in violation of 8 U.S.C. §1325 or illegal re-entry of a foreign national after being removed from the United States in violation of 8 U.S.C. §1326 and our expertise can assist in the defense of such charges.
Criminal cases based on violations of the Immigration and Nationality Act and the United States Code (relating to immigration matters) require the expertise of an attorney with knowledge of the immigration laws to properly defend such charges. Often times, the prosecutors who bring such charges have little knowledge of the complex system if enforcing and implementing US immigration laws and the assistance of one of our attorneys can offer great assistance in the review of charges, a determination of whether the government has established its case and if necessary the defense of such matters before the District Court.
Statistics published by the US Department of Justice provide that over 90% of all criminal charges brought before the US District Court result in a plea being entered and the defendant being sentenced. And often times the fight in a criminal case is as to the application of the proper sentence to be applied. Once again, knowledge of the Act is instrumental in determining the interplay between criminal charges and the US Sentencing Guidelines. Although the Sentencing Guidelines are not mandatory, most District Court Judges will follow the advisory guidance that the Guidelines provide and sentence defendants accordingly.
Finally, if a foreign national is convicted of any criminal offense this could set forth certain adverse immigration consequences. The Supreme Court has published opinions indicating that a foreign national must be provided some information regarding the potential immigration consequences of entering a plea to certain criminal charges if that plea is to be considered as having been entered knowingly, voluntarily and intelligently. Most criminal defense attorneys lack the expertise in US immigration law to provide useful advice on these issues.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a criminal violation relating to US immigration law, we are available to consult, to defend and to assist. Our goal in these cases is to assist foreign nationals with understanding the charges which have been filed, understanding their Constitutional rights and understanding the long term effect of the charges lodged. Moving forward with sufficient information to know the potential pitfalls and obstacles which lay ahead is the only way to proceed if such charges are brought. Please contact our office if we can provide any assistance with federal criminal charges.